Comprehension is usually my students lowest skill. Many of my students with Autism can nail routine skills that are straightforward and black and white, but when it comes to less concrete skills, they fall apart.
Here are some strategies that I use in my classroom to start at the bottom and build up comprehension skills.
For my lower students and nonverbal students…they NEED picture supports to be successful and even begin to learn this skill. The simple passages (1-2 sentences) and picture supports for responses, just dob their answer with a bingo dobber or point, help make them more successful and independent. You can grab the general set (seen above here), and the seasonal set (for all year long, seen below HERE).
Another way to target comprehension is through Adapted Comprehension Books. These short, simple stories include a matching component on each page and comprehension questions (from a field of two) at the end.
If you are a big lover of all things adapted books- check out the YEAR LONG bundle!
Another way to target comprehension is through read alouds. Read alouds are TOUGH for my students. Sitting still and paying attention are TIRING tasks. To help keep them engaged I use Tell Me Play dough mats.
I have students fidget with the playdough during the read aloud. Then I ask them each a question, when they get it right- they can smash it on the correct circle! They love the competition and the mats are differentiated so each student gets exactly what they need! You can grab the November mats here for only $2.00!
Another great comprehension product for read aloud’s is Gabrielle Dixon from Teaching Special Thinkers story time visuals.
These visuals help create a story map and includes visuals for 5 popular stories stories a month. They work on characters, setting, and sequencing!
Comprehension is no small task! It is so important for our students to build this life skill to be able to interact with their world appropriately. Building these skills from the very beginning can make a world of difference!