Before you start you day it is important to find out as much information about the SEN setting you will be working in. This will allow you to prepare for the day and allow you to better understand the children’s needs.
Questions to Ask Teaching Assistants
1. I usually ask the teacher about each individual child before the day starts and ask about any behaviours I should be aware of and triggers for challenging behaviour etc. It helps get an idea of what to expect from the day. I always ask for a briefing on the routines of the day. (Tara McNally, Katandra)
2. What are the top 3 things that are important in this class? (Jen Cooksley, TA in SEN schools across SE region)
Questions to Ask Teachers
3. Where can I find the CRT folder / information about each student?
- What makes them happy/sad/anxious/upset? What does it look like? What calming/reassuring techniques do they respond to?
- What sensory input does this student seek or avoid? How is this best managed?
- What increases their engagement? What affects their engagement? (e.g. noise, hunger, tiredness)
4. Are there any key classroom management expectations at this school/in this room I should be aware of (eg no raising of voices, hands up for silence, staying in, time out etc)?
5. Are there behaviour management policies/positive behavior plans I should be aware of?
6. Who do I contact if I need help and how?
7. What are the top 3 things that are important in this class? (Jen Cooksley, TA in SEN schools across SE region)
Bonus Questions to Ask at the Staff at the End of the Day
8. Do you have any feedback for me?
If you are interested in working in SEN settings, click here for more information and to get in touch!