In the mind of the child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), Asperger’s syndrome, or any child with developmental delays, daily routines and expectations can be incredibly distressful. These online video lessons begin with the basics, which then lead to other positive experiences such as pretend and age-appropriate play – even initiating play with peers. Entire lessons are dedicated to showing you how to manage non-compliance, redirect stimulatory behavior and build tolerance to change.
We will also guide you step-by-step through communication fundamentals, both verbal and non-verbal, in order to help close the gap with your socially distant child: making requests and ‘why’ inquiries, two-way dialogue, and picking up on visual cues.
Sample Video Excerpt
To see the entire video, see Autism Lesson #1: Getting Your Child to Sit and Pay Attention
Lesson 1: Getting Your Child to Sit and Pay Attention
Once the child masters sitting, it leads to other experiences including progress with the child’s toilet times, dinner times, table time, car rides and so on.
Lesson 2: Getting Your Child to Follow One and Two-Step Directions
Children tend to think in concrete terms, making it hard to understand things like jokes, puns, sarcasm and playing pretend. As a result, these kiddos need just a little extra help to see HOW to play in a pretend way.
Lesson 3: Managing Noncompliance
If you find yourself with noncompliance or an uncooperative child, then you haven’t yet identified the reinforcers that are pleasing enough for the child to encourage them to respond as requested.
Lesson 4: Discrete Trial Programming
Tasks are broken down into simple trials that accommodate the needs with children with short attention spans and that are nonverbal. Discrete trial focuses on repeated lessons or trials to teach new skills and language.
Lesson 5: Nonverbal Child (Use of Gestures, PECS, and Short Phrases)
The picture exchange communication system uses pictures to help the child to transition and complete daily activities like bathing. The PECS can be used for a way of having the child initiate communication as well. The child simply exchanges a picture for the desired object. Its concrete and visual in nature.
Lesson 6: Expanding Verbal Skills
When child is able to start identifying objects during discrete trials, we need child to start requesting these items daily and asking for what they need (asking for food when hungry). If the child can do this, the child is more likely to demand for an item when they strongly want the item.
Lesson 7: Improving Back-and-Forth Communication and Use of “Why” Questions
Advanced language skills such as size, shape, background and number are taught so child can make messages more specific. Child will start to use pronouns, add endings on words, using plurals, and past tense and child starts to answer and “why” questions.
Lesson 8: Moving from Self-Stimulatory Behavior to Appropriate Play
Some stimulatory can be seen in adults such as tapping pen, twirling hair when bored or anxious etc. Children with autism engaging in this behavior when nervous, excited or when they feel under stimulated. Stimulatory behavior can be soothing to a child and the goal is to make it more socially appropriate.
Lesson 9: Redirecting echoing, scripting, flapping, toe-walking, and other problematic behavior.
Most parents find that their child participated in self-stimulatory behaviors more when they are stressed. Interacting with your child in some way may break up the self stimulation. If the behaviors are due to stress may reduce the amount of time spent in the behavior. If child is left alone it is likely that child will reengage in the behavior.
Lesson 10: Using Visual Cues and Schedules
Ever have a day where you forgot about a meeting, forgot to drop off something and missed events and appointments and were frustrated. These experiences are what a typical day for a child who has autism can consist of. If specific visuals are not in place a child may feel lost or anxious. The child may become prompt dependent if adults are constantly required to move them from activity to activity and child may want to “shut down”
Lesson 11: Improving Tolerance of Change in Routine
It’s a well-known fact that children with autism often have difficulty with change in routine or unexpected events. The Autism Society of American says children with autism have an “insistence on sameness and a resistance to change.” By using various techniques, parents can introduce change, and teach flexibility. This can help the child at home, but it can also increase their ability to adapt when it comes time to make the important transition to school, where change will be an inevitable part of every day.
Lesson 12: Improving Play Skills
Children tend to think in concrete terms, making it hard to understand things like jokes, puns, sarcasm and playing pretend. While this is not true for every child on the Spectrum, it is true for many. As a result, these kiddos need just a little extra help to see HOW to play in a pretend way.
Lesson 13: Fostering Age Appropriate Play
Children with special needs often have developmental delays which may cause them to be more immature than their peers. Autism can create a noticeable gap between a child’s developmental age and his or her actual age. It’s a good idea for parents to help guide this into behaviors which are more age-appropriate.
Lesson 14: Initiating Play, Joining-in and Sustaining the Play
Sometimes a child with autism will want to play with another child but doesn’t know how to initiate play or conversation. Then there are times when a child with autism begins to play with another child but doesn’t know how to act appropriately and just ends up scaring his new friend away. There are many tools and techniques that are useful in helping your child learn how to act socially appropriate.
Lesson 15: Helping the Child Who Wants to Play With Others but Doesn’t Know How
A child with autism does not always know how to interact and read social cues and cannot always control behaviors and lacks confidence to enjoy social situation. The child also may not be able to interpret or understand the feelings of others and may have a language delay. Therefore the child may be avoidant in social situations. This child must learn techniques that will help him or her respond appropriately in social settings.
Lesson 16: For the Asperger’s Child (Back and Forth Conversation, Staying on Topic, Understanding Social Cues)
A child with autism may say words clearly and use long, complex sentences with correct grammar, but still have a communication problem. If he or she has not mastered the rules for social language, the child may appear socially awkward to others and may obsess on topics.