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We empower recreation leaders to be more inclusive of individuals with autism

Recreation

Our goal is to empower community recreation providers to connect individuals with autism with opportunities for meaningful inclusion in all community rec activities.

BOOK TRAINING

Community recreation provides individuals and families living with autism with the opportunity to improve physical literacy, create social connections, and be a part of their community.

Join the growing number of municipal recreation leaders who are championing inclusion and providing training and resources to their swim instructors, skate coaches, day camp leaders and other key program staff to support the inclusion of individuals with autism and related diagnoses.

A group of children and staff ready to play dodgeball in a gymnasium.
A large group of adults cheering with a Canucks Autism Network staff.

We have collaborated with organizations and service providers to develop the following publicly-available resources for supporting individuals with autism:

Online Training

In partnership with BC Recreation and Parks Association and with the financial support of the Ministry of Children & Family Development (MCFD), Canucks Autism Network has created a one-hour online learning tool to provide recreation staff with foundational knowledge about autism and an introduction to key support strategies

Take this course.

Video Resource Library

Canucks Autism Network’s video resources are proudly supported by Autism Speaks Canada.

Video Modelling for Sports Skills and Community Activities
Video modelling can be a great teaching tool and may help some individuals on the autism spectrum learn specific skills. At Canucks Autism Network, we use a variety of strategies to support individuals with autism in the sport and recreation setting. These strategies can serve as instructional tools for teachers, coaches, and community recreation leaders to increase motivation, communication, predictability, and participation in community recreation.

Canucks Autism Network Video Models YouTube channel features:

  • Sports and rec skills – these can be watched before trying a new sports and rec activity or in between practices to remind participants of what they are learning. Our video model library features skills and activities from swimming, soccer, basketball and more.
  • Community activities – these can be watched before attempting a new activity in the community or as a helpful reminder for appropriate behaviour in community-based scenarios. Our how-to videos include “riding the bus”, “using a fitness centre” and “what to do when you are lost”.

Visual Supports (or Visuals)

A visual support (or visual) is a picture or other visual item to increase communication and show learners what you are saying. They help provide a concrete representation of what you are trying to communicate when you are using strategies to increase engagement, motivation, and predictability. Visual supports can be pictures, drawings, objects, words, or lists. Download and print our go-to visual support templates below and start using them at home or in the community.

2 Box Choice Board or 3 Box Choice Board 
Increase motivation by providing two or three choices
3 Box Visual Schedule 
Display the order of activities and increase predictability and structure (can be used as a choice board).
10 Token Board 
Reinforce small steps and celebrate with a preferred item or activity after individual receives all 10 tokens.
Countdown Strip  or Countdown Strip with Words or Countdown Strip with Numbers 
Count down from five to increase predictability and motivation.
First/Then Board 
Use a first-then board to incorporate a fun/preferred activity and increase motivation.
Wait Card  
Use a wait card to provide a concrete representation of the abstract concept of “waiting”

How to Create Visual Supports

PLAY VIDEO

“I can’t say enough about CAN’s training. The session was well organized and the material was engaging and well delivered. The learning facilitators had a strong sense of when they needed to clarify material.

There were 75 staff in attendance and I really feel as though each one left with positive takeaways to use in our rec programs. Well worth the cost. Thank you!”

–Linda Kuntz, Recreation Program Coordinator, City of Delta

Training Feedback

Have you recently completed a workshop with Canucks Autism Network? We’d love to hear your thoughts. If you’d like to share your feedback,  please fill out this Training Feedback form.