We take an eclectic approach to teaching techniques at The Walnuts, but our methodology is based upon the TEACCH approach, underpinned by a sound understanding of autism and the need to maximise our pupils’ independence.  The promotion of pupils’ communication and social interaction skills is central to the range of learning and teaching approaches used and these support progress academically, socially and emotionally.  In order to best meet the needs of our pupils we aim to teach skills within a meaningful social context and to provide opportunities for generalisation across settings.  

Knowledge and understanding of the individual, the building of positive relationships and the creation of personalised learning programmes delivered using autism specific strategies, in an autism friendly environment are at the heart of our approach. We recognise that each student is a unique individual; however, the underlying difficulty for every Walnuts student lies in the area of communication.  We therefore provide an environment where spoken language is clear and precise and, where appropriate, written communication, symbols, objects and sometimes gestures are used to reinforce both expressive and receptive language.  

Included within the approaches used are elements of behaviour strategies and therapeutic approaches appropriate for learners with ASD.  Being able to break through the fear and confusion of daily life is dependent on the creation of a secure and trusting environment. Only then will the children and young people be receptive to learning.

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