Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Free Visual Instructions for How to Open a Combination Lock

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Do I have hyperlexia? Is my child hyperlexic? Take the free online hyperlexia quiz today!

Free printable visual instructions for how to open a combination lock. Great for autistic kids and hyperlexic kids as they transition to middle or high school.

If your child is headed into middle school or high school, then there's a good chance they'll have a locker with a combination lock. And with that comes new responsibilities! 

You have to remember to lock up your locker to keep your belongings safe. You also have to remember the three numbers needed to unlock your new combination lock. And you even have to remember the specific sequence of directions and turns required to open the darn thing too.

It's a lot to remember. Especially when paired with executive functioning challenges or fine motor skill delays. 

As you can see, there are a lot of skills required for learning how to open a combination lock

And it can definitely end up being a source of frustration for your child, which is something we certainly don't want. Right?

Well, that's where these free printable visual instructions can help. They'll walk your child through the steps required to open a standard combination lock so that they can open them with confidence.

Teach kids and teens how to use a combination lock using these free printable visual instructions

How to Open a Combination Lock: The Steps You Need to Teach Your Child

There aren't many steps required for opening a lock like this. However, it requires a specific sequence to open it and that's what makes it tricky. Do I turn right or left? Do I turn one time? Two times? More? Which number am I on now? Well, here's how it works...

Step 1: Turn the dial to the right multiple times to clear the lock. Then turn one more time to the right and stop when the first number lines up with the indicator found at the top of the lock.

By the way, you might have to point out the indicator on the lock to your child. It might be an arrow or a small line. It might be a different color or barely noticeable. So be sure to show your child what to look for here.

Step 2: Turn the dial to the left one whole turn past the first number and keep going. Then stop when the second number lines up with the indicator.

Step 3: Turn the dial to the right and stop when the third and final number lines up with the indicator.

Step 4: Pull down on the combination lock to open. Ta-da! If it doesn't open, return to step one and try again.

Tips to Help Your Child Be Successful with their New Lock

Before school starts, be sure to practice opening and closing the lock with your child using the provided visual instructions.

Your child might find this video on opening combination locks helpful as well. It shows all of the steps in action.

Write down their unique number code so they can reference it when practicing. Then after a few attempts, have your child practice opening it with the numbers memorized, which if you have a hyperlexic child, won't take long. Especially since many of them - like my son! - love numbers and are quick to memorize things.

Another thing you should do is outline rules for using their lock. That may include reminding them that they should keep their lock combination code secret. They shouldn't share that code with others. Be sure to write these rules down. That's the key (pun intended!) to supporting hyperlexic kids (see tip #1 here).

Also be sure to discuss what to do if the lock doesn't open on the first try. That might mean using a coping strategy such as deep breathing to ward off frustration. That might mean trying again, but at a slower pace. Be sure to write down these suggestions for your child so they can reference how to troubleshoot issues. Besides, that's why you're practicing ahead of time anyway.

Finally, like I mentioned above, remember to point out where the indicator arrow or line is so they know how to line up the numbered dial. It can be easy to miss otherwise.

Download the Free Printable Visual Instructions for Opening Combination Locks

This printable is one page and includes step-by-step instructions with visuals. To get a copy of the visual instructions for how to open a combination lock, click the link below:

>> Click here to download the free printable

Teach kids and teens how to open a combination lock with these free printable visual instructions. They're a great way to help students learn how to use a combination lock!