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School Talk


1 Month Intensive Treatment Beneficiaries 2020-08-27

“Getting attention”

In the beginning of the training, Chi often avoided eye contact and did not know how to call others by their names to get their attention. Our therapist taught Chi some social skills to get people’s attention when needed. For example, we taught Chi to walk closer to the target person and to observe if the person noticed him while keeping a proper social distance. After repeated training, Chi has learnt to call a person’s name and pat his/her on the shoulder to get attention. He now can also make eye contact with people and actively make requests!

“Learning pronouns” 

Hin had struggled with using pronouns like “I”, “you” and “he”, therefore our therapist formulated a programme about learning pronouns. Hin first learnt some body languages, such as pointing at himself when saying “I” and pointing at others when saying “you”. The therapist then gradually increased the difficulty of the exercise and asked Hin to tell who the objects belong to. Hin was able to use pronouns naturally in daily conversation after practices. One day, the therapist and Hin were taking turns to play with a toy. Hin gave the toy to the therapist and clearly said, “It is your turn!” 

“Singing kids songs”

One day, Wai’s therapist was singing “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes”. The therapist was singing and doing some body movements to let Wai imitate. The therapist shared that interesting songs with simple movements could enhance Wai’s imitation skills and attention. Wai was trying hard to follow the therapist’s movements. What a cute little girl!

“I want to go to the toilet.”

Yeung was four years old and was not yet toilet trained which made his mother worried, so we did a toilet training programme with him. Our therapist first arranged Yeung to sit near the washroom and took him to the toilet regularly. We also checked Yeung’s pants every 15 minutes and rewarded him snacks for keeping the pants dry and clean. We then gradually reduced the prompts and increased time intervals to take Yeung to the toilet. Although accidents did occur sometimes, after intensive training, Yeung has learnt to ask for the toilet when he needed!

“A play schedule”

Many children with autism have restricted interests. At the beginning of the treatment, Yat only liked to play with the simulated microwave oven. To increase Yat’s interest in other toys, our therapist prepared a play schedule. The therapist put different toys on the schedule and asked Yat to follow it, and intentionally put the simulated microwave oven at the end. As Yat had to play with the designated toys according to the schedule, the therapist could gradually increase the number of toys so as to encourage Yat to play with more different types of toys.

【Finding missing puzzles】

There are many ways to play with puzzles. Our therapists would use puzzles to help children improve their attention.

Yuet’s attention was weak and he always looked away, so we played a finding puzzle game with him to enhance his attention. The therapist first put several puzzle pieces at different places and then pointed to the pieces with his finger one by one. Yuet had to look at the direction that the therapist pointing at, then went to pick the pieces and matched them with the related pictures on the puzzle board. After practices, his attention has improved. He can now finish 5 puzzle pieces in a row!

Chi, Hin, Wai, Yeung, Yat and Yuet were invited to present their experience in receiving ABA services with Autism Partnership Foundation (operating in Hong Kong) (APF, HK). Chi, Hin, Wai, Yeung, Yat and Yuet are past beneficiaries of APF, HK and no longer receive any treatment services from APF, HK.