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Episode #163: The Importance of Teaching Board Game Play To Young Children With Disabilities with Dr. Erin Barton

Today we’re featuring more accessible research! We’re talking about a topic I am really passionate about: Modified Leisure with play, social skills, and joint attention all mixed in.

Dr. Erin Barton explains the research involved in her study, Teaching Board Game Play to Young Children With Disabilities. Her work focused on expanding play research from pretend play to play with peers, with an emphasis toward the least amount of adult intervention. Dr. Barton makes an important note that every child deserves a 100% chance that they will have at least 1 chance for a positive interaction with their peers. Board game play is a naturally occurring chance for small group play with functionality that applies beyond the therapy room.

The children involved in the study had limited speech, developmental delays and required no peer aversions, specific motor skills related to game play, and the ability to follow one-step directions. They generalized board game play with visual cues and step-by-step guides among an array of games that were picked daily by rotating student choice. In the study, they found that after between 5 and 10 sessions, children were able to generalize and maintain the skill.

  • Dr. Barton also shares some tips that everyday clinicians can use today in the therapy room.
  • Cooperation focus: change games so they meet the needs of the child; they don’t have to be the original win/lose function.
  • Adaptations: create visual cues and prompts that can become a part of the game and do not need to be faded.
  • Student interests: use games and interests the students enjoy to reinforce the process.

Did you like this episode? Let me know if you’d like more like this, and I’ll keep bridging the gap between research and practice!

#autism #speechtherapy

What’s Inside:

  • Increasing chances for positive peer-to-peer interactions.
  • Generalizing board game play with cues and adaptations.
  • Supporting peer-to-peer interactions with play and limited adult intervention.
  • How to teach board game play for the everyday clinician.

Mentioned In This Episode

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