Speech Development Blog

Speech Therapy Ideas for Elementary School Autistic Children

describe the imageIn elementary school, things get more demanding for children on the autistic spectrum. As their communication differences become more apparent to peers, children on the autistic spectrum struggle with complicated non-verbal social interactions. Try some of these strategies with your autistic elementary child:

  • Work on labeling feelings. Try using cartoon drawings and stories to help children identify how a character is feeling and suggest responses for that emotion. Try using your child’s favorite book to draw interest and to engage them.

  • Teach your child to ask questions.  You could hide a toy and ask where the toy might be as you search the room for it or you could play 20 Questions and have your child try to guess what object you are thinking about.

  • Set up small play dates for your child to help facilitate social communication.

  • Model non-verbal communication with your child. Work with your child on body posture such as turning away, crossing arms, and facial expressions.  Practice interactions that the child may encounter and provide strategies that your child can use.

  • Since many autistic children on the spectrum have intense special interests, use these interests to your advantage to engage your child and to keep them engaged for longer periods of time. This will allow you time to work on questions and answers, turn taking, non-verbal communication, and other concepts.

As your child gets older and school becomes more and more demanding, your autistic child will need your help more than ever to practice skills that they are using in the school setting. Just working with your child a little bit at a time everyday can make great strides in their interactions at school.  

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Topics: speech development, speech development activities, speech therapy, speech therapy ideas, speech delays, autism, speech therapy tips