Research suggests that preschool autistic children do not develop play in the same way as a normally developing youngster.
Preschool autistic children do not interact in the same way as a normally developing child and are not as likely to want to explore their environment.
What is autism?
Autism is a disorder affecting the brain- some of the symptoms of autism are:
Imagination and Interaction deficits.
So how does this affect preschool autistic children play?
To begin understanding autism play, we first should look at what is meant by playâ€¦
Play is spontaneous
Play is imaginative
Play should be fun and enjoyable
Play involves an active role by the person playing
Play can be solitary or with another person
“Preschool autistic children and what is autism”
So how will the symptoms of autism affect the act of play in autistic children?
In normally developing children the use pf play helps with development, for example:
Play has various stages…
Sensory stimulation a baby stimulated and attracted for example to a cot mobile or baby gym.
Exploratory play a youngster playing with Lego, or a cardboard box even. This is how a child begins interacting with their environment. With autistic children this inquisitiveness is missing.
Physical play this includes actually touching others for example, rough and tumble, football and interactive pretend play.
Social play this includes wanting to play with other children, for example on the playground, at the park etc.
Pretend play Make believe play, all normally developing children will engage in pretend play, this is part of development.
Play is a natural process a normally developing child goes through. It helps them explore their thoughts, feelings and interact with their peers and their environment.
In autistic children the need to play and be inquisitive is missing
Autistic children prefer their own company and lack interest in their environment; they preferrepetition to imagination and compulsive play.
Preschool autistic children may not stimulated by a bright colored cot mobile, or play gym, do not want to engage in pretend or rough and tumble play. Lack the inquisitiveness for exploratory play and do not understand why or how to engage in pretend play.
When preschool autistic children begin preschool the differences in behaviors of a normally developing and an autistic child can become apparent.
There are ways as a preschool teacher or parent you can help the autistic child manage their behaviors and experiences at preschool by implementing autism social storiesâ€¦
Research suggest autistic children respond well to autism social stories and therefore they can be introduced into daily and preschool lives affectively-giving the preschool autistic child clear coping mechanisms and instructions on how to interact with others and perform everyday tasks.
For example how to “pretend play”, “say hi”, “share toys” or perform tasks such as tooth brushing, visiting the doctor, starting preschool and so on…
Autism social stories are available in printable format making sharing them with all responsible in your autistic childâ€™s care easy.
Implementing autism social stories is easy and effective. Research shows autism social stories are widely used with positive affects and results.
For immediate downloads visit one of these main autism sites:
It is perfectly normal to make a judgment about a person as soon as you meet them. We judge their hair, face, voice even their stance and quickly decide what we like and dislike about the person, before we even get to know themâ€¦We can read a persons body language and realize if they are happy, sad, pleased to see us or angry
People with asperger syndrome can find it harder to read the signals that most of us take for granted.This means they find it more difficult to communicate and interact with others which can lead to high levels of anxiety and confusion.
Asperger syndrome is a form of autism.
Autism is a lifelong disability, which affects how a person makes sense of the world.
How they processes information and relate to others. Autism is often described as a spectrum disorder.
This isbecause autism spectrum disorder will affect people in different ways and to varying degrees.
Asperger syndrome has been described as the ‘hidden disability’.
â€¦.Because the asperger person will look normal to the outside world. The individual with asperger syndrome will have difficulties in three main areas.
They are: Social interaction, Imagination and communication difficulties
You may have heard them referred to as “the triad of impairments”
Whilst there are some similarities with autism, those people with Asperger syndrome will present less difficulties with speaking and are often of average, or above average, intelligence.
With the right support, encouragement, and social aids people with Asperger syndrome can lead full and independent lives.
One such support you can give an asperger person is in the form of printable asperger social stories
Research has shown that asperger social stories can be regarded as a valuable part of an asperger person’s life Giving them the social know how that the condition renders them without.
Making social acceptance easier and less stressful Asperger social stories are used as a tool for teaching and re-enforcing appropriate behaviors and social skills.
To access and immediately download suitable asperger social skills stories visit one of our many sites PLUS grab your free report Managing your autistic child’s behavior from:www.autismsocialstories.com
Autism is a developmental disability of the brain; autism is not a form of mental retardation.
The word autism can refer to several similar disabilities, like Autistic Disorder, Aspergers Syndrome, also Atypical Autism (a type of Pervasive Developmental Disorder, not otherwise specified) etc..There are differences between these conditions, but on the whole they are quite similar.
The word ‘spectrum’ is used because, while all people with autism share three main areas of difficulty, their condition will affect them in very different ways. Some are able to live relatively ‘everyday’ lives; others will require a lifetime of specialist support.
There are three main areas of difficulty which all people with autism share these are referred to as the
‘triad of impairments’. They are:
Difficulties with communication
Difficulties with social interaction
Difficulties with imagination.
Some autistic people may be affected more by one symptom, while others may be affected more strongly by a different symptom.
People with autism may experience some form of sensory sensitivity. This can occur in one or more of the five senses – sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. A person’s senses are either intensified (hypersensitive) or under-sensitive (hypo-sensitive).
For example, a person with autism may find certain background sounds, like the hum of a fridge for example unbearably loud or distracting, while the rest of us can ignore or block out the noise. To an autistic person the noise can cause anxiety or even physical pain, this can be referred to as an autism anxiety trigger.
People who are hypo-sensitive will often not feel pain or extremes of temperature. Some may rock, spin or flap their hands to stimulate sensation, this is called autistic stimming. An autistic person will use stimming to help with balance and posture or to deal with stress, another autism anxiety trigger.
People with sensory sensitivity may also find it harder to use their body awareness system. Which tells us where our bodies are, so for those with reduced body awareness, it can be harder to navigate rooms without walking into objects or bumping into others. They will not appreciate what is an appropriate distance from other people to stand.
This can cause social problems, as the person will be unaware of the need for personal space and may stand very close, making people feel very uncomfortable.
They may also have problems with ‘fine motor’ tasks such as tying shoelaces, or fastening buttonsâ€¦
Sometime autistic people may have learning disabilities, which can affect all aspects of their life, from going to school, to learning how to wash themselves, clean their teeth, Or how to feed themselves.
The symptoms of autism will vary from person to person each autistic person will have a different degree of learning disability.
Some autistic people will be able to live fairly independently, but may need some support.
While others may require lifelong, specialist support. However, all people with autism can, and do, learn and develop with the right sort of support and resources.
One such form of autism resources is something called autism social storiesâ€¦These are short pieces of text with appropriate pictures-giving your autistic child, teen or adult specific social cues for everyday living skills.
Like how to wash their teeth, visiting the doctor, eating out. Social skills stories for autistic children and teens, or adults can be printed and used as instructions for all of lifeâ€™s â€œnormalâ€ and â€œnot so normalâ€ life experiences and actions.
They can be like a best friend to an autistic person helping them feel better in, and cope with, situations they may struggle to understand or deal with – by giving them clear and accurate information about those situations.
Have you ever tried to understand the characteristics of autism and how an autistic mind works?
Autism may not have any external symptoms,Â and it may be almost impossible to recognize children with autism or aspergers.
The symptoms of autism in a child are not characteristic or common to all autistic children. Some children with autism may not display the expected repetitive behaviors we associate with autism/aspergers.
Some children with autism may be completely unconcerned about any dangers to them. For example, they may just stand in the middle of the street without worryingÂ about a car hitting them.
They may show a dislike to playing pretend games, they will be un-willing to co-operate or join other children in group games like hide and seek, chase or board games, these are common autism characteristics.
Autistic children prefer to be alone and do not like playing with other children. They are not interested in being introduced to new friends or classmates, or spending time with other children.
They may throw temper tantrums over small things, and their behavior can be quite out of the blue at times. There tantrums may be violent. Sometimes children with autism can also be un-cooperative, and no amount of persuasion will make them budge. There reasoning is very different from that of a normal person.
Sometimes these characteristics of autism…like they may not return smiles when smiled at, sometimes they may not even respond to their own name can be distressing for a parent.
They may have little or no eye contact and may use pointing as a gesture to show what they want rather than asking or making eye contact, they may even just grab your arm and direct you to what they require.
These are just some of the characteristics of autism. Sometimes it can be hard for people to understand how an autistic mind works, and it can be very frustrating as a parent or educator trying to explain why your child or student is different from other kids.
This is where autism social stories can help…they can give the autistic child a clear understanding of why their behavior can be frustrating as well as help them find coping strategies for situations they struggle with like making friend, visiting grandparents as well as other situations they may struggle with.
Benzodiazepines are also known as tranquillizers and sedatives. The best known are probably diazepam (brand name Valium) and nitrazepam (Mogadon).
Benzodiazepines fall into two groups – the anxiolytics, these are used for treating anxiety, and the hypnotics which are used for treating insomnia.
Benzodiazepines are useful drugs for treating a number of conditions.
How do benzodiazepines work?
Benzodiazepines work by depressing the part of the brain, called the reticular activating system, which regulates how active the brain is. They do this by increasing the amount of a substance called gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA), a chemical involved in slowing down the transmission of nerve signals in the brain.
What are they for?
While all benzodiazepines essentially have the same action in the brain, some calm its activity more, making certain drugs more suitable for treating anxiety and others for treating insomnia. Along side the drug treatment many parents now turn to something called “SOCIAL STORIES” they can help with bedtime routines, as well as other related difficulties your autistic child may be experiencing.
Benzodiazepines are also used in anesthesia, and for treating epilepsy and muscle spasms.
For more information on treatments, how to benefit from a good social skills story and advice on autism visit:
A local government run special education school, for children with a variety of mental and physical disabilities.
Before you decide where to send your autistic child, you should take the following into consideration. Are the special educational needs for autistic children being met, are the targets for autistic children in school being met.
As well as the setting, where is the school in relation to your home, how big is the school, how well is it set out, and what is the atmosphere within the school like.
Is the special educational needs for all autistic children within the school highly structured, do they emphasize communication and social skills, and include positive behavior management techniques. All of these things are very important and should be in place before your autistic child starts the school.
You should speak to the new teacher and ensure that the classroom strategies followed in school are easy to implement at home so that your autistic child has the same predictable physical and social environments.
Autistic children like repetition so this is very important and home and school should be working together to keep things on an even level and hence alleviate some of the stresses felt by children with autism.
One important autism resource that can be implemented easily to help your autistic child cope with stresses caused by social, communication, imagination and interaction deficits is autism social stories…Implementing autism social stories can have a beneficial affect on your autistic child. For more useful advice and support visit us at www.autismsocialstories.com
Autism social stories are visual supports for autistic people…they give autistic people clear instruction and coping strategies…for all those situations they struggle to understand or cope with. For immediate download of autism social stories visit: www.autismsocialstories.comÂ
In the past there was a lack of knowledge about autism. However today there is a rapidly growing autism awareness of the special needs and difficulties that children with autism can face.
There is also a rapidly growing number of specialists in the field of autism spectrum disorders.
In Britainautism awareness id growing with over 500,000 people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders.
Each autistic individualâ€™s behavior, including your own autistic childs, will be unique, but there will be underlying common problems which bond the whole group together.
If your autistic child has recently been diagnosed as having autism spectrum disorder, undoubtedly you will have a lot of questions.
Your first thoughts may be about autism awareness and what it means, how it will affect your child and where on the autism spectrum disorder your child is, as well as how, this will impact on your entire family.
Research by specialists in autism spectrum disorders has shown parents, educators and other specialists can find coping strategies for autistic behaviors using autism resources such as…autism social stories.
These vital autism resources – autism social stories are used to great affect in helping children with autism.
For more information on autism resources such as autism social stories visit:
If you have an autistic child, or you work with one in school, chances are you have probably heard about “autism social skills stories.”
What are autism social skills stories? How are social skills stories created?
The ultimate question of cause is will they help your autistic child?
A social skills story is a story written for an autistic person with social skills deficits to help them understand and cope with social interactions or behaviors.
Social skills stories are written by therapists, teachers, parents and other professionals to prepare autistic children and adults for various experiences and situations.
…autism social stories can be written for almost every situation and can be as varied as, shared reading, job interviews, trips to the mall, a dental check-up, and talking in class.
Mostly autism social stories are used to help the autistic person understand what is expected of them in school or family settings.
They are also used to help autistic children plan for transitions, changes, ask appropriate questions, and inter-act with other people.
Social skills stories may contain images, including photos, autistic children respond well to pictorial content, which will make the story’s content and purpose clearer. Autistic children respond well to autism social skills stories and research shows a well written autism social story can help an autistic person control, learn and manage behaviors and skills.
Autistic social skills deficits can be helped by implementing autism social stories to help autistic people feel more comfortable in and gain a better understanding of the world they live in…
Clinical psychology is one of the main areas of research into the application of theory of mind.
Autism is one of the most severe psychiatric impairments that can occur during the early stages of development.
Autism spectrum disorder affects more boys than girls. Autism spectrum disorder is increasing in diagnosis, yet still the causes are unknown; although researchers, doctors and specialists do however agree on certain conditions leading to the diagnosis of autism…
The diagnosis of autism on children with autistic symptoms range from abnormalities in social communication, absence of imagination, isolation, lack of capacity to involve in social games, to an almost total impairment of cognitive functions.
The concept of theory of mind is difficult to grasp, as is typical with any exploration into the mental world of humans.
Theory of mind, is the ability to â€œread mindsâ€, this however is thought to be the activity of psychics, but in a sense most of us are mind readers, or at least we have a theory of mind.
Mind reading does not represent a single cognition, behavior, or emotion. The mind is made up of beliefs, desires, emotions, perceptions, and intentions.
Theory of mind is the ability to attribute these mental beliefs to ourselves and others, in order to understand and predict behaviors. However this ability is not there with autistic individuals…
The theory of mind involves us making the distinction between the real world and our mental images of the world.
Autistic individuals lack social understanding of how to mind read…therefore autistic symptoms and characteristics make this ability to mind read impossible for autistic individuals.
Theory of mind deficits can be used to explain the social and communication impairments that define autism spectrum disorder.
We can however help autistic people understand how to deal with situations they at present struggle to comprehend because of their lack of being able to mind read…or use the theory of mind.
Autism social stories can be implemented to help autistic people with situations like “A social kiss”, “How to ask for help”, “Visiting relatives”, “moving house” and so pretty much anything can be dealt with using autism social stories…
For immediate download of autism social stories visit:
Autistic children tend to use people as objects, for example an autistic child may take your hand and direct it towards an object they want. The intention here being that you get the object and pass it over to them.
Normally developing children at around a year begin to gesture what they want, this will then lead on to language.
This is known as intentionally bringing something to someoneâ€™s notice, the child may point and gaze at the object, or bring it to you so you can take a look too. They will gaze at it, smile and share their pleasure in whatever it is that has taken their fancy.
An autistic child on the other hand may point to the object to get you to give it to them, but wont want to engage you in sharing the object with them.
In other words autistic children are far less likely to gesture or communicate their desire for your attention, or for you to share the object. Communication deficits is a part of autism spectrum disorder…
…Communication deficits can be helped autistic children a re visual learners which means they are far more likely to understand what you are trying to convey when you use visual prompts.
For example if you are wanting to communicate to your autistic child bed time, or dinner time; this can be made easier if you use visual prompts.
Research carried out on children with autism spectrum disorder found that by using autism social stories they can increase the autistic child’s understanding of and make them more comfortable in many situations they are finding hard to cope with.
The autistic child’s ability to learn visually is increased using autism social stories and excellent results were found in the children using autism social stories.
For more information on autism social stories visit:
The theory of mind is often abbreviated to â€œTOMâ€
The Theory of mind begins developing early in a persons life, as does the symptoms of Autism.
So for instance a normally developing child of around 6 months old will already be able to read your face, they may not yet know what the face means, like a frown for example. But will be aware of your smile.
Once a child has realized what the different facial expressions mean, they are able to act accordingly, this is non-verbal behavior, theywill be able to take the appropriate actions.
For example a toddler can be guided by itâ€™s mothers facial expressions to know what she is feeling.
The autistic toddler on the other hand does not read facial expressions and will not normally be interested in watching faces. The face to an autistic toddlerdoes not hold the same fascination.Â
By about a year a normally developing child will of begun to realize that most people act in certain waysto achieve an outcome. So for example cry-gets a cuddle or soother.
This is an early marker or point of interest in theory of mind. The autistic toddler will not yet have figured out how certain behaviors gets certain actions.
This general pattern will continue through the childhood years, into adolescents and onto adulthood.
However there are ways to improve, teach and nurture your autistic toddlers social capabilities. By using something called autism social stories you can give your autistic toddler the appropriate information and behaviors for certain tasks, activity’s and situations…in-face anything you feel they need help coping with or help in understanding.
For more information on autism social stories visit us at:
Aspergers is a mild form of Autism, as with Autism it is a lifelong disability.
Aspergers syndrome, affects people in a similar way to Autism, the person has difficulties with three main areas of development:
The persons social imagination
Their communication skills
Plus their social interaction abilities
While there are similarities to Autism, the main difference is that the Aspergers person will have fewer problems with speaking. Plus they will normally have average, or above average intelligence.
Another difference is that they tend not have the associated learning difficulties Autistic people have. But might have other more specific learning disabilities like dyspraxia, dyslexia, ADHD and epilepsy.
There is no reason why an aspergers person can notlive a normal life.
Characteristics Aspergers Syndrome
As with most conditions the characteristics of asperger syndrome will vary from person to person.
But there is always a common thread running throughÂ all aspergers people.
Difficulties with communication and language
Generally aspergers people will find it hard to keep up with a conversation and will not express themselves correctly.
They may not understand how to begin a conversation, or end it and will not be able to read body language or facial expressions.
They may use odd language within a conversation and not understand jokes and other flippant remarks or phrases.
They will talk literally, stating the obvious even when itâ€™s probably not cool to do so.
Difficulty with social interactions
An asperger person may miss important social cues, and find relationships hard to maintain.
For example: aspergers people may find it difficult making friends and will sometimes find it even harder to maintain those friendships they do strike up.
Aspergers people may not understand how to behave socially, they may begin inappropriate conversations and not respect personal space
The asperger person may appear withdrawn and uninterested in other people.
Have difficulties with imagination
Although some people with aspergers may show a real flare for certain activities, like painting, music or even things like numbers.
Generally people with aspergers lack social imagination.
As with Autism they will prefer repetition and sameness.
Also people with aspergers prefer routine, even down to lining up their belongings. in a ritualistic fashion.
For more information on aspergers and how to manage behaviors and problems using asperger social skills stories. Plus get all the latest information and research into how aspergers social skills stories can be used effectively for all people with aspergers helping them become more independant visit any of the blow sites and download these valuable asperger resources: www.autismsocialstories.com/asperger_adolescents
The Autism spectrum disordersare also called Pervasive Developmental disorders (PDD). This isbecause they involve delay in many areas of development.
So what is PDD?
Autism is the most severe of the PDDâ€™s
As we have already looked at people with Autism have developmental problems with, thinking, language, behavior and social skills.
To be diagnosed as Autistic, a child will need to have had a certain amount of developmental symptoms in the areas of thinking, language, social interactions and behavior, which is often thought of as stereotypic behaviors.
What is Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS)?
PDD-NOS, is refered to as atypical autism or mild autism.
It means that the person has the same differences in their development as autism, but not to such a great degree.Â
A child with PDD-NOS does not meet the criteria for any specific PDD.Â
No matter where your child falls on the autism spectrum disorder scale they will still have the typical autism symptom: social deficits, communication deficits and imagination and interaction deficits…These can be controlled and managed using something called autism social stories.
For more information on autism social stories and how they will help control and manage autism symptoms and behaviors visit:Â www.autismsocialstories.com
Research into the causes of Autism, has shown that a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and sometimes other factors contribute to autism.
Researchers believe that there are several genes, which may contribute to the disorder. There are also said to be several brain regions, which may also show forms of abnormalities.
Scientists are also exploring the possibilities of Genetic imprinting, which will determine the parental donator of the abnormal gene.
It has also been suggested that neurotransmitters in the brain may not be working normally, or even a faulty immune system could be the cause, or a virus.
Some research has suggested that the Autistic person may have been subjected to increased levels of protein in their mothers blood during birth.
Or that the mother whilst pregnant may have been subject to extreme stress,
Some research has also suggested vaccinations may play a part in Autism. All of these causes of autism are of cause still being looked into and as yet no single reason has been given for the causes of autism.
For more information on the causes of Autism and how we can help your autistic individual with coping strategies. By implementing autism tools such as autism social stories…visit our site.
…And gain immediate access to these reliable well researched and used autism tools...autism social stories can be used for a variety of issues and are pictorially rich making comprehension easy for the autistic individual.
Autism is a developmental disorder which can affect children from either birth or the early months of their lives.
Research into understanding autism – cause and affect…shows delays and deviance from normal development. This will occur in three areas:
1.Social relationships and interactions
2.Language and communication.
3.Activities and interests.
When these three areas of behavior are affected. At more deeper level than that of a normally developing child, the distinctive patterns that are noticed in the symptoms of Autism in a child become apparent.
Some experts now believe that children with the these areas of impairments should be given the diagnosis “autism spectrum disorders”.
Which should then lead on to further and more in depth diagnosis of autism being made.
Which in turn should look at the severity, the cognitive level, plus the clinical traits and associated medical conditions.
The National Autistic Society in the UK suggests a possible rate of almost 1 in 100 people will be diagnosed with autistic spectrum disorders.
Although autism is normally present from birth, or very soon after, there can be a delay in autism diagnosis due to the nature of the condition and sometimes the severity.
Diagnosing Autism can be complicated, because of the variations found in the mental ability of children with autism.
Approximately two-thirds of children with autism will have additional learning difficulties, with unusual behavior patterns, which may well be put down to an overall developmental delay. There are methods used for children with autism to help them become more socially aware of their enviroment…these are called autism social stories.
These autism social storiescan be used effectively in the home and classroom to help children with autism understand the world they live in and give them methods and techniques for undertaking, tasks, activities, social situations and events. They provide clear instruction for tasks such as: tooth brushing, using deodrant, getting a haircut and visiting the doctor. As well as instruction on various other topics…
All pictorially rich, as children with autism are visual learners To gain immediate access to these autism social stories and help with understanding autism visit
One of the main features of autism is an impaired social interaction. Many autistic children will engage in repetitive behaviors, such as rocking, twirling, finger flicking and toe walking. Or they may use self-harming behavior such as head banging and biting themselves.
The find the world confusing and therefore the overload of sensory input from the world around them is too much for them to handle. So they will use autistic repetitive behavior like finger flicking, this is called stimming, in order to concentrate on the flicking and thus calm themselves down.
Mostly autistic children tend to start speaking later than other children and may also refer to themselves by their name rather than saying I or me, as we would.
Many autistic children have a reduced sensitivity to pain, and are abnormally sensitive to sound, touch, and other sensory stimulation.
Which is why there tends to be an adverse reaction to being touched or cuddled.
It is still not known for sure why, but on average 20 to 30% of autistic children will develop epilepsy by the time they reach adulthood.
Autism is normally detected during infancy or very early childhood. Usually there are some concerns about the child’s development, which is normally noticed and recorded within the first year.
These concerns will normally relate to problems the autistic child is having with communication, play, or social responsiveness, and to stimming or repetitive behavior.
Over time, the pattern of an autistic childs development is mainly influenced by the degree of cognitive impairment.
Autism may co-exist with a varying range of measured ability levels; the overall majority of autistic people do have some degree of learning difficulties. With around 50% of Autistic people having IQs of 50 or below.
Certainly it has been found that those who have severe learning difficulties are unlikely to develop any kind of meaningful speech.
Sometimes in autistic children there is also a possibility that they will develop behaviors like self-harming and stimming.
However research shows that sometimes when the abilities of autistic children are considered within the average range, the outcomes of behavior are more unpredictable.
In some cases, there has been an improvement as the autistic child gets older and their ability to cope with; and adapt to, situations becomes much better.
However also within this group of autistic people, some will remain dependent.
But others may achieve virtual independence and be able to maintain successful employment.
In some autistic children however, it is found that sometimes their overall problems will increase with age.
However regardless of the autistic persons abilities there is still something you can do to aid their social and personal development.
Research shows that by using autism social stories as a method for helping autistic people find clear coping strategies they can gain some form of social understanding and gain more independence.
In a study of preschool children it was found that children with autism were disadvantaged in the way they play.
Autistic children find it difficult to play as a normal child would. This lack of play skills in autistic children, can aggravate the childâ€™s social isolation from their peers, and onlyunderline their differences from other children.
So what is play?
Play should be fun and enjoyable.
Play should have no set goals imposed on it from outside influences; it should be imaginative and sometimes impulsive.
play should be spontaneous and voluntary
play should involve some kind of active involvement on the part of the player
play can be solitary or enjoyed with friends
The Development of play
Childrenâ€™s play should go through a number of developmental stages
Â·Sensory motor play, stimulation from objects, for example a baby gym.
exploratory and manipulative play, for example Lego
physical play including rough and tumble
social play, playing with their peers, playground play
pretend play or make believe
Why do children need to play?
Play allows our children to learn new skills and practice them in safe supportive surroundings.
Sensory motor play teaches babies and young infants about their own bodies and about objects in their immediate surroundings. The bright colored toys stimulate the babies mind and he/she will reach out to grab and explore the toy.
Manipulative and exploratory play teaches older infants about various objects, what they do; sound like, how they react together and how they influence the world they are living in.
Physical play, rough and tumble play, teaches toddlers and pre-school children some gross motor skills, which will provide them with the experiences of whole body interaction with others.
Social play is vast right from the mother and baby interactions to childrenâ€™s make believe play, for example, playing mummyâ€™s and daddyâ€™s, which teaches children about social relationships in the world they live in.
Autistic children on the other hand like repetition and things to stay the same, they will engage in stimming and repetitive play, mostly the play of children with autism is solitary.
Preferring their own company to that of others. Children with autism may find interactive, make believe play strange and not understand the reasons for this kind of play.
So how do you help your Autistic children learn to play?
Research has shown that using autism social stories as a method for encouraging and teaching play skills to children with autism has had positive effects.
Implementing autism social stories encourages children to engage and understand what play is. An autistic child can learn to play through the use of autism social stories.
Autism is a brain disorder that is normally diagnosed in early childhood. Kids with autism have difficulties communicating and forming relationships with other people. Autistic people also find it hard to make any sense of the world around them. Often referred to as “Autism Own World”So what are the symptoms of Autism in A Child?
Some kids with autism may appear normal up until the age of 1 -2 years
Lack of the ability to point to objects, to direct others attention to it.
They do not adjust their gaze to look at objects others are pointing to or looking at.
They can not begin or sustain a conversation easily
Language develops very slowly, sometimes not at all
Repeats words, or passages such as TV commercials, simple rhymes, (repetitive behaviour, or stimming)
Uses the wrong language when speaking about themselves. For example will say “Brian wants drink”, rather than can i have a drink
Uses nonsense rhyming
Will communicate by using gestures rather than words.
With regards to social interactions they may show these signs, “The symptoms of Autism in a child” may be
They may show a lack of empathy
They may be withdrawn
Prefer to be on their own, and not with other people
They will have difficulties making eye contact and may not react to smiles
They may treat others as if they were objects and not people
They do not want to play interactive games
Kids with autism process sensory information differently
Their senses, sight, touch, smell, taste and hearing may be heightened, or lower than normal
Their pain barrier may well be heightened or alot lower than normal
They withdraw from physical contact
They do not get startled by loud noises
May find normal levels of noise painful
They may well use stimming which is a form of repetitive behaviour
Kids with autism may find playing hard
They will have little ability to play interactively or imaginatively
Can not imitate others
They will prefer solitary play
They may well prefer ritualistic play, constantly repeating the same thing, stimming ,repetitive behavior
The behavior patterns of an autistic child may not be the same as other children of a similar age
A short attention span
They may use repetitive body movements like rocking
They like to keep things the same
Will throw tantrums
Very narrow interests
They may well show signs of aggression towards themselves and or others
They can be very passive
On the other hand they can be overactive
Not all of these symptoms of Autism in a child, will present themselves and they will vary from one autistic child to another.
There are a lot of different treatments and therapies available to the parents of an autistic child and your G.P. is your first port of call.
At Autism social stories, you will find printable social skills stories that can be printed off and used as social cues and for everyday situations.
Autistic children respond well to repetition and this is what social stories will give you a gentle reminder of how they are expected to cope and deal with situations, at home, school and out in public.