Don’t Talk Too Much

March 12, 2013

Always remember that most children with autism have difficulty processing and understanding language.  As adults, we sometimes think that the best way to teach our child is to talk a lot.  While it is important to clearly model language for a child with autism, it is also important to make sure that the language that we use is understood by the child.  First, pay attention to the child to understand the complexity of language that they can understand, a single word, a couple words, a full sentence.  When you provide a direction or ask a question, be sure to have the child’s attention.  Then, say whatever it is that you want to say.  Wait 5 to 10 seconds, and if you think that maybe the child did not hear you, you can repeat the exact information again.  Wait another 5 to 10 seconds, and then show the child what is expected.  In other words, if you told the child, “Get your shoes,” physically guide them to get their shoes.  In most cases when it comes to talking to your child, simple is better.

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Donna April 14, 2013 at 4:50 pm

Excellent tip Tiny (and Dr. Ellis)! A good reminder, especially when working with preschoolers with autism. Congratulations on your website and launching Step by Step Behavioral Solutions. I will be waiting for future tips.

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