fbpx
Last Updated on April 27, 2021 by Steph Reed

After using the idea of an ‘attention bucket’, I looked further into the Attention Autism approach and found this inspiring video of a talk by the founder, Gina Davies.

The Attention Autism approach focuses on developing attention and listening skills and giving the children “an irresistible invitation to learn”.

‘Attention Bucket’

An ‘attention bucket’ is a bucket full of motivating and exciting toys and gadgets which will be of high interest to the children. Gina suggests that the adult in front of the children with the attention bucket must be the most interesting thing in the room so everything else must be out of sight. I am currently thinking of new toys and gadgets to put into my attention bucket but this will depend on my new class. At the moment I have wind up moving toys, light up toys, a spinning top, toys that make noises and toys with balloons (e.g. balloon cars). Here are some of the items in my bucket:

The adult with the attention bucket demonstrates one toy at a time in front of the children, for example, winding up a toy snake and then watching the snake move. The reward must be intrinsic to the activity – the enjoyment of watching the snake.  

If a child gets up out of their seat, they are gently and non verbally guided back. This is to encourage attention and listening skills. Gina suggests using 3 toys in each short session. 

With my last class I usually had an attention bucket session once every morning and once every afternoon. Attention bucket activities are also good to use to refocus the group.

Here are some of my favourite Attention Bucket resources

I have written more about the Attention Autism approach in the post: Attention Autism stage 1: attention bucket video and comments from creator Gina Davies

There is a lot of great information on Gina Davies website: Attention Autism

Please feel free to share your resource ideas for the ‘attention bucket’ in the comments below!

Download Your FREE Inclusive Teaching Strategies Guide!

11 Inclusive teaching strategies to support the learning of all children, not just those with special educational needs.
This guide is made for teaching staff as well as parents and carers.

Learn Practical Ways to Meet the Needs of Autistic Children and Maximise Their Potential

Take a look at our popular range of online courses and coaching programs for teachers, children's professionals and parents. Designed to build your skills and knowledge to meet autistic needs and help children thrive!

Teaching Autistic Children With Impact autism and SEND online course

Teaching Autistic Children With Impact

8 courses full of practical skills for Teachers to ensure autistic children reach their potential.

Practical Skills in Supporting Autistic Children autism and SEND online course

Practical Skills In Supporting Autistic Children

7 courses full of practical strategies to support autistic children. For TA's, Support Assistants and Professionals.

Nurturing Your Autistic Child parent and carers autism and SEND online course

Parents & Carers: Nurturing Your Autistic Child

6 courses full of practical and helpful ways to support your child's learning and development.


Steph Reed

Hi I’m Steph Reed, an Autism Specialist Teacher and Consultant. I teach schools, service and families practical ways to meet the needs of autistic children, to maximise their outcomes.

4 Comments

Amelia · November 4, 2014 at 1:47 am

I have been taught that if you are not interesting as a teacher, you are not going to grab your students attention. After watching this video, it was even more evident to me that you as a teacher must be both engaging and interesting….one more thing on the to do list! I found the speaker in this video to be very knowledgeable on the topic of keeping your students engaged. I completely agree that when you aren’t interesting students are going to be totally distracted and not involved in the lesson. I love the idea of the attention bucket and the idea of using it at least 2 times a day. but, as it was stated, the reward must be intrinsic for the student to get anything out of it.

learning toys for toddlers · June 8, 2018 at 7:14 am

Awesome post ! Great tips provide on educational toys list. Thanks some help for sharing this! I love finding toys that are educational as well as fun!

Yanci · May 20, 2020 at 9:22 pm

Where did you purchase your bucket?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.