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Child Directed Therapy

Posted Apr 17, 2019 - 11:27am

By Mandy Hall, M.S. CCC-SLP

Print your materials. Plan your session. Grab your bag of ‘tricks’ that is sure to engage your student. Set up your room. Find your rewards. Get yourself ready for the best thought out and planned session. Finally, your non(or partially) verbal student with Autism comes in for her 30 minute session. You grab her device, sit down, and get started on ALL of the activities that YOU planned!

Your student activates the device to play with Peppa Pig. You set the timer for 2 minutes. Timer goes off, you prompt her to make another choice.


That session turned into a total bust. You keep pressing and prodding to get her to choose something SHE DOESN’T WANT TO DO! So, guess how many successful hits I got out of her independently using her PRiO? Less than 5. We end her session, and she heads to ABA. Her mom pulls out her phone to calm her down and lets her watch her favorite youtube video.

YOUTUBE! That’s IT! I have a student with Autism who is SO MOTIVATED (and learns/sings/adds vocabulary) by watching youtube videos. I have seen where SLP’s make “core adapted books” with LAMP Words for life, so I thought to myself, how can I engage her with youtube using LAMP!?

Here’s where the magic started. I text her mom, get her favorite song (for the time being; as you know, it changes frequently!). I pull up the youtube song/video and begin to write down all of the words they sing that correspond with words for life; 84 Full. After I compile my vocabulary, I take screen shots of the videos where those words would appear. Next step, I went into vocabulary builder and took a screenshot of the sequence of the word. With a little bit of cutting, pasting, and laminating, we have our very first CORE ADAPTED YOUTUBE VIDEO BOOK!

The next session I had with my student, I didn’t plan a SINGLE activity. She came in, she saw the book, and that joint attention immediately formed; along with SHARED JOY. She sat down, hit ‘book’ on her device, and we went through that adapted youtube book. She activated EVERY SINGLE WORD I had printed and glued onto those screenshots (most without prompting)! It was the BEST session we had ever had. I was happy, she was happy, mom was happy. I held back tears of joy. Working with mom, we found something that is motivating her right NOW, to engage with her device, and increase her vocabulary knowledge on her PRiO. Since that session, I have made 3 more books and she is LOVING every single book. Child-directed therapy is my favorite kind of session.

Watch our session on You Tube. 

Stories and Strategies fo...  -    aac, prio, lamp, therapy, youtube, child directed