Teaching play skills to young children with autism

Otterbein University , USA.
Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability (Impact Factor: 1.02). 11/2012; 38(1). DOI: 10.3109/13668250.2012.732220
Source: PubMed


Play is critical for the development of young children and is an important part of their daily routine. However, children with autism often exhibit deficits in play skills and engage in stereotypic behaviour. We reviewed studies to identify effective instructional strategies for teaching play skills to young children with autism.

Empirical studies on teaching play skills to young children with autism published from 1990 to 2011 were located. These studies included single subject and group designs.

Twenty-six studies were reviewed. The majority of studies on teaching play skills used combined interventions. Children with autism improved their play skills, with direct intervention embedding their interests during play. Improvements in play skills increased positive social interactions and decreased inappropriate behaviour as collateral effects.

Further research is needed to develop more effective play skill interventions that assess the functional use of play and are implemented in the natural environment.

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    • "This study extended the existing literature by demonstrating that the use of special interests and strengths of children with ASD can facilitate their ability to play games cooperatively and spontaneously with their typically developing peers (Angell et al., 2011; Baker, 2000; Baker et al., 1998; Campbell & Tincani, 2011; Keeling et al., 2003; Koegel et al., 2012; Spencer et al., 2008). Games were chosen to support the children's play repertoire, providing a more structured and predictable context facilitating learning for children with ASD (Jung & Sainato, 2013). The children in this study were able to learn the games quickly and maintained game play with peers after the intervention. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may exhibit delayed play skills or repetitive play and have difficulty engaging in spontaneous play with peers.Method A multiple-probe design across participants was used to investigate the effectiveness of a video modelling intervention and the use of children's special interests on their engagement with games and with peers for kindergarten children with ASD.Results Results indicated that all three children with ASD demonstrated increased engagement with the games and social engagement with their peers. Inappropriate behaviour decreased with the intervention. The effects were maintained during the follow-up and generalised to a novel game. Social validity data indicated that the study was meaningful and the intervention was feasible and effective.Conclusion Future research should focus on designing play skills interventions that serve to motivate both children with ASD and their typically developing peers in order to promote more spontaneous and interactive play among them.
    Journal of Intellectual & Developmental Disability 04/2015; 40(2):1-15. DOI:10.3109/13668250.2015.1027674 · 1.02 Impact Factor
    • "Teaching play skills in the natural environment with peers may enhance children's interactions with peers as well as promote maintenance and generalization of play skills (Jung and Sainato 2013; Liber et al. 2008). Embedding instruction of play skills into daily routines during naturally occurring activities may facilitate the spontaneous play of young children with special needs in the child's natural environment (Lifter et al. 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: We investigated the effects of a least to most prompting procedure on the performance of board game steps and game-related on-task behavior of young children with special needs and their typically developing peers. This study was conducted employing a concurrent multiple baseline design across participants. After teaching the board game steps using a systematic prompting strategy, the participants demonstrated increases in the performance of board game steps and game-related on-task behavior. In addition, the participants maintained high levels of performance and game-related on-task behavior during post-game training. The effects of teaching board games using prompting strategies, implications for practice, and areas for future study are presented.
    03/2014; DOI:10.1007/s40617-014-0001-8
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    ABSTRACT: The relationship between symbolic play and other domains, such as degree of autistic symptomatology, nonverbal cognitive ability, receptive language, expressive language, and social development, was investigated. The assessment files of 101 children with Autism Spectrum Disorder were studied. Nonverbal cognitive ability and expressive language were both significantly and uniquely related to symbolic play, although receptive language was not. Autistic symptomatology ceased to be significantly related to symbolic play when controlling for two or more other variables. Social development was related to symbolic play in those children with high nonverbal cognitive ability but not those with low nonverbal cognitive ability. The diagnostic and treatment implications of these results are discussed.
    Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 09/2007; 37(7):1215-23. DOI:10.1007/s10803-006-0263-2 · 3.34 Impact Factor
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