3 Ways To Stay Organized When Working With Special Needs Children At Home, School, And In The Community

Organization is a key to success when working with children who have special needs. From knowing medications to assisting parents, an organizational system can help you spend less time stressed and more time doing what you’ve always wanted — helping children.

Whether at home, school, or out in the community, organization will help you develop deeper patient and family relationships. These families rely on you to help guide their children’s behavioral and developmental progress. And while that seems like a hefty task to manage, it’s a rewarding one that enables you to work with children and impact their future.

To help shoulder this responsibility, here are three tips to stay organized, whether you’re working in a home, school, or community setting.

#1. Tech
Keeping an organized calendar is the first step. Luckily, we live in a digital world, where you can sync your calendar through multiple devices to save you from scrambling, and you can easily access important information while on the go. When used with respect to all privacy laws, technology can help you be more productive both on the job and at home. If you don’t want to dish out a lot of money on expensive tech, downloading Google Calendar and signing up for a Gmail account is a free alternative.

Another piece of technology that can be helpful when working out of the office is a “hot spot,” enabling you to connect your Wi-Fi dependent devices to the Internet from your car or anywhere else. If you need to use your computer on the go, you can turn on the hot spot and access the Internet. Tech stores sell hot spots that are on a data plan (like your cell phone’s LTE or 4G connection); however, you can also enable your phone to be a hot spot and use the data to access the Internet. You will just need to have enough data to support this use.

#2. Tools
Organizing your tools can help keep you from scrambling for them later. Keep physical and digital files in one location, respectively; have a pen/notepad ready for quick notes (or take these on your device as well); prepare de-stressing activities so they’re ready when needed; etc. Know where to turn when your assistance is needed.

While rolodexes are somewhat outdated, traditional filing systems for storing non-PHI related documents can still work for you. Paper files are a great quick reference, instead of having to find them on your computer system.

#3. Scheduling
When working with special needs children at various locations, including home, school, and in the community, your schedule can easily become jumbled if you’re not careful. That is why it’s so important to be as organized as possible. Having a well-organized schedule can help you not only at work, but also in other aspects of your daily life. Knowing how much time you can allot toward any singular activity will keep you on track for your appointments, and will allow you to schedule some downtime for yourself, as well. Of course, when scheduling, remember to be professional and always ensure the privacy of your clients.

Pathways of Pennsylvania has been serving communities in Pennsylvania since 1981. Every individual has a right to lead a meaningful and positive life, and we are changing lives, one day at a time. Pathways of Pennsylvania is comprised of four companies: Children’s Behavioral Health, Inc., Pathways Community Services, LLC, Raystown Developmental Services, Inc., and The ReDCo Group, Inc.