While MCPS is closed, parents and caregivers of a student on the autism spectrum may need new ideas for how to spend time with their child -- both for fun and for learning. The target audience for these ideas and resources is anyone supporting an autistic student on the MCPS Alternative Learning Outcomes (ALO) curriculum, but these ideas may be beneficial to other students as well.
We are continuing to curate and add new sites and descriptions every day, so check back again!
Note: xMinds has not verified each and every one of these sites and does not endorse any of the listed sites.
Check the MCPS Corona Virus Webpage for the latest updates and announcements from MCPS: https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/coronavirus/
MCPS Continuity of Learning webpage: https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/coronavirus/continuity-of-learning/
April 1, 2020 Message from MCPS outlining plans for the second week (April 6-10) of online learning (also in Spanish): https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/publicinfo/community/school-year-2019-2020/coronavirus-update-20200401.html
March 28, 2020 Virtual conversation on phase one of the "continuity of learning plan." If you missed it you can watch the video here in English: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbTrMkVxaf0&feature=youtu.be&t=187 and here in Spanish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SmOrdVZWkLU&feature=youtu.be&t=261
March 27, 2020 letter, updated and corrected on March 28 from MCPS with guidance for families whose student has an IEP or 504 plan. This includes the corrected phone number for the AskMCPS phone line. https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/publicinfo/community/school-year-2019-2020/coronavirus-update-community-20200327.html
March 25, 2020 letter from MCPS Superintendent Jack R. Smith announcing changes to the school calendar and providing information about phase one of the district’s continuity of learning plan, which begins on March 30: https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/publicinfo/community/school-year-2019-2020/coronavirus-update-20200325-2.html
March 25, 2020 letter from MCPS Superintendent Jack R. Smith announcing that MCPS will continue to be closed until April 24, and providing information about the distribution of Chromebooks starting on March 26, for students who do not have a computer at home. https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/publicinfo/community/school-year-2019-2020/coronavirus-update-20200325.html
March 22, 2020 letter from MCPS Superintendent Jack R. Smith. Please note the online resources at the bottom of the letter. https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/departments/publicinfo/community/school-year-2019-2020/allin-this-together-20200322.html
MCPS's "Instructional Activities Center." Scroll down for ALO activities. Unfortunately, parents may have challenges getting access if they don’t know their child’s student ID# and password from school. xMinds is inquiring about resolving these issues. https://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/curriculum/contingency/index.aspx
In addition to the websites below, educational therapist Jean Hickey, M.Ed, has generously offered to answer questions and suggest resources to ALO parents by email at no cost. Parents who need FaceTime consulting should contact her to learn more. Jean Hickey's email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Literacy Specialist Dr. Caroline Musselwhite presents a webinar on March 24: "Supporting Students with Complex Needs at Home – Guidance for Teachers and Parents." This is a Don Johnston online learning webinar. Read about it and register.
Here’s a blog post that describes over 30 Chrome web extensions to help students in five categories: Text to Speech, Readability, Reading Comprehension, Focus, and Navigation.https://www.controlaltachieve.com/2016/10/special-needs-extensions.html?fbclid=IwAR16pYyXYS8-pGQGwvNOVBj2tSMO9AoepkRFB3cMkWp4tcHqlcEKSUk6F-Y&m=1
TEACCH Autism Program -- TEACCH offers simple but helpful tips for parents who are educating an autistic child at home during these times of change. https://teacch.com/resources/teacch-tips/
Calendar of live streaming events (and some prerecorded events) -- mostly for pre-school and elementary age. This spreadsheet calendar shows a wide range of interesting events, from rocket launches to baking: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1d9vA4JUnr1xFafSY5n7iF75eCb3fX2Azy_6rZOOzH_8/htmlview?usp=sharing&fbclid=IwAR3nteXuvfUjAPdslYwGTckpYT4KSMAouS8uMvVVrR_Tafrtpf9uh0eJ7vs&sle=true