Surprising IEP and 504 plan accommodations to help kids self-regulate and manage emotions

Get ideas for unique accommodations from parents and caregivers in the Understood community.

Kids who struggle with self-regulation and managing emotions may get accommodations in school. That happens through an IEP or a 504 plan.

Schools often have a set list of accommodations for these challenges. But sometimes, kids get unique supports that fit their very specific needs.

We asked parents in the Understood community to share the surprising accommodations in their child’s or .

Accommodation ideas from our community

“We keep bags of carrots in the school office fridge. When my son becomes agitated and needs sensory stimulation, he goes to the office and sits under the desk of the secretary, munching on carrots till he’s calm enough to return to class.” — Rachel

“Using mechanical pencils rather than regular pencils because the sound of regular pencils makes his skin crawl.” — Robin

“Having the entire fourth grade rearrange recess so that my daughter had it at the end of the day when her ADHD meds start to wear off. The school offered it!” — Christine

“My son can wear a ball cap and carry a weighted backpack all day.” — Stephen

“Someone lets my son know just before there’s to be a fire drill. He has auditory processing issues. If the alarm catches him off-guard, he can (and usually does) have a meltdown.” — Susan

“A break card that lets him walk around school by himself and get away from people and recharge.” — Sofie

“Using a toilet in the school that didn’t flush automatically. Thankfully, she outgrew that!” — Michele

“My son gets to listen to his own music during free work times. Even with his noise-reducing headphones, free time was overwhelming for him.” — Kristen


Check out Wunder, our community app for parents of kids with learning and thinking differences.

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