A variety of settings give strength to learning essential skills.

December 17, 2018

A multitude of variables exist that foster learning on an individual basis. At Crossroads individual programs are key and so those variables are taken into consideration and planning by the therapists and teachers leading them to success. One such variable is the setting.

 There are many types of settings for instruction at Crossroads. Our ABA (applied behavior analysis) foundation and operation leads teachers and therapists to establish learning environments that will encourage the skills and engagement that is desired for the students and their goals that are being addressed. That’s why sometimes you’ll see lessons and activities on the floor, while others are on the table, and others yet are at desks. Rooms vary from the Classroom to the Library, and to the Gym and Cafeteria, and some activities are done inside the school with others being brought outdoors. It all depends on what the teachers and therapists are targeting for the students in their care.

For instance, here in Room 8, children are working in a small group setting to find items to put into the appropriate buildings and then to operate some of those things. They are spread out on their rug where cars can be driven and where buildings can be built. Targeted skills include sharing, being part of a group, turn-taking, identifying objects, among others for sure.


Another type of instruction is seen here. Room 1’s music circle pictured here includes songs and a plethora of literacy skills for the youngsters in the group at the time. This group setting is seated and set up at the same place in the classroom as Morning and Afternoon Circle, where students are learning to remain seated, remain in a group, and attend to materials presented by a teacher. Picture cues help the children learn words and their meanings, as well as make certain sounds that are arising in the songs being played on the cd player. Ms. Laura, Room 1 Teaching Assistant models the song and its words and sounds, and invites the children to interact in a variety of ways.

Here’s yet another setting, this one with Ms. Melanie in a Speech Therapy session. This one-to-one setting is often important for students to make gains. The little guy is working on labeling his foods, and here they are working on saying “cereal” when a piece of cereal is presented. Once he says “cereal” it is given to him, a natural reinforcer for asking for what he wants. He is using an iPad to verbally express the word, which tells us that there has been some great progress of first learning to use pictures to express wants and needs, and then transferring that skill to an iPad. This session is taking place in the school’s library where therapists sometimes work with students so that there will be fewer distractions around them than in the classroom.


Location settings may start out as a part of a routine so that children learn to associate going to a certain place with a certain activity. As well, they may change as the child becomes more skilled and generalization of a skill becomes important to target. Learning for one student will look very different for another. At Crossroads all variables are taken into consideration and planning, because learning is critical to success in the lives of the students we serve.

   ———————Check out past articles about learning at Crossroads Center for Children! ————–

Learning in groups

Classroom Centers That Work

iPad Program update and thank you again to RMHC!

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