As adults we understand the passing of time, what is coming next and when things finish. Most of us would make use of a calendar, diary or a to do list to manage the day and our appointments throughout a period of time, this helps us to stay organised, plan things and help manage the unexpected. A child is yet to learn about the passing of time or what is going to happen next. Visual aids can offer a child the support they need with this.
A visual timetable is a tool to help someone to understand events that will happening throughout a period of time. It allows the child to see what they are doing now and what is going to happen after. This will help the child to be present in what and also be prepared for the next event.
Visual timetables can also help with specific routines such as washing hands and going to the toilet.
Visual timetables can help support every child because they are there to help break down routines and tasks instead of them being abstract. They can also be helpful for children with special education needs.
If you choose to introduce visual timetables to a child it takes time, you will need to model how to use it and keep repeatedly referring back to the pictures.
Depending on the child's level of understanding start off with photos of the child doing the activities, this way the child can relate to the images. Introducing visual timetables can take time, it is not something that a child will automatically use this is why the adult will need to model the process lots of times.