EVERY CHILD IS A BORN EXPLORER

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Child, I want to open your world! Here are a few ways to change the constancy of the stars

2020-08-07

In movies and TV shows, an autistic child who never tires of repeating the same thing is always impressive. They may be attracted to toys that go in circles, jump for joy at the sight of long, thin objects, or like a particular sound or smell.

Leave it as it is or force change? Can parents and teachers use this trait to inspire and guide their children? Share the advice and practices of a BCBA expert and a parent with autism.


Tanya Baynham

—— MS.BCBA ——

As parents and intervention teachers, we must focus on expanding our children's interests. One way to do this is to put together the things our children enjoy and the things they want them to expand.

● Try a new activity: Sing a favorite song as you help your child climb an unfamiliar slide on the playground.

● Read a Book: While reading a book, tickle your child before turning over each page.


The second way to broaden your interest is to think about why your child likes these things.

● If they like Thomas because of his happy expression, they can put a Thomas sticker on a teaching aid.

● If TA likes Thomas because of wheels, please introduce his TA has wheels vehicle.

● If your kids enjoy watching them explode in the microwave, put mantos in a coke bottle or make a volcano out of baking soda.

● If he or she likes them squashed together, use marshmallows in training or matchmaking games.


The third way to expand interest is proposed by Singer-Dudek, Oblak, and Greer(2011), who demonstrate that some children are more likely to play with a novel toy after receiving reinforcement when they see another child playing with a novel toy.

To apply these findings to your child, if Thomas is used as a reinforcer, give Thomas to your child's siblings when they try something new (like silly putty).

This will only work if your child has the skills necessary to use novelty toys. If your child is not spontaneously playing with toys after being taught how to play, consider the following potential reasons:

● Children can not master the game skills independently

● This process may include verbal instructions for the child to start playing

● The teacher puts the toy in front of the child or displays it in a way that is different from nature (e.g., on a shelf rather than on a table, and assembled rather than disassembled).


The location of the toy, the adult's presence and direction, and whether the toy is assembled or disassembled all influence whether the child will play with that particular toy.

If spontaneous play is the goal, consider watering down any verbal instructions, adding steps to the teaching process, letting the child choose the location of the toy in the home and teaching the child to start playing without a teacher.


Here are some final strategies for expanding your child's interests:

● Prioritize toy conversion. Depending on the number and type of toys your child is playing with, you can change toys hourly, daily, weekly or monthly. Reduce your child's favorite toys and increase exposure to other toys.

● You may have to show a new toy many times before the child shows real interest. Use your child's favorite toy as a reinforcer and let him gradually accept the new toy.

● Teach children skills to move independently (e.g., scanning and choosing between large TV sets or shelves, making requests where they can't be seen)

● Forced choices. Show options and let your child choose, offering forced choices that you want your child to explore.