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Home learning: boost self-esteem with free person-centred planning tools

New person-centred planning tools from ASDAN can help learners develop a more positive identity and communicate effectively, says Susannah Harlow, ASDAN Education Policy and Development Officer.

This lockdown feels very different to March 2020. Although it’s a bit blurry, I remember how hard it was back in the spring and so I know what to expect this time around.

I am not going to heap unrealistic expectations on myself or my family. I am not going to make the same mistakes this time, such as attempting to make sourdough! Life is short and I live near a bakery. Joking aside, we enter this lockdown wiser because we can draw on our previous experiences to help us navigate these difficult times more successfully.

We are sharing the person-centred planning resources below for free as part of our efforts to support all learners during this challenging period. Last year, we compiled a bundle of 30 free resources to support home learning, which have been downloaded more than 4,000 times. We recently added 10 new resources, including a 'ways to combat stress' worksheet, a weather diary and an expressive arts resource pack. 

The person-centred planning resources are from ‘My Independence’, ASDAN’s new suite of preparing for adulthood programmes, developed in partnership with SEND experts NDTi (National Development Team for Inclusion). Person-centred planning aims to ensure that planning for a learner’s life beyond formal education reflects their own hopes and aspirations.

These tools, designed mainly for learners with SEND, can be used with any student to support their development.

'Like and admire' tool – developing a more positive identity

The ‘like and admire’ tool can be used by learners for self-reflection and group discussion. It can also:

  • boost learners’ self-esteem
  • help students develop a more positive mindset of themselves and others
  • support young people to become more aware of the impact of their actions on others

Suggestions about how to use this tool include:

  • asking others to chart what they like or admire about the learner, recording these ideas in the tool and sharing it with the student
  • asking the learner to complete the tool for each member of their household

The lockdown is an opportunity to celebrate those we live with – choosing to focus on the positives brings benefits for the learner and those around them.

Communication chart – helping learners meet their needs more effectively

Our communication chart can be used to explore how we express ourselves. We all communicate differently – keying into the different mannerisms of those around us can really help us to hear and be heard, keeping us connected with others in our community.

This tool can be used to record what a young person is trying to communicate through their words or behavior. It can be particularly helpful if people feel a learner’s voice is not being heard.

The tool offers an opportunity to work with the young person to record their behaviour when communicating and what the significance of their actions are in meeting their needs. The activity can be finished by recording what needs to be done next to enable the young person to achieve their aims.

Improving our communication with one another is key to improving relationships, something that will really help us during this lockdown and beyond.

Have the person-centred planning tools above been useful? We’d love to hear from you. Please let us know by emailing or tagging us in any of your tweets using @ASDANeducation.

Please visit our My Independence page to find out more about ASDAN's new SEND programme and download free sample copies.