For children who have autism, challenges with communication are often some of the biggest challenges to overcome as they grow and start school. Parents of children with autism should consider child care programs that provide autism therapy every day because early intervention therapy can help the child grow to be more functional and capable adults. Communication-based therapy is a big part of these programs. Take a look at some of the communication goals that are usually in place for children who are in autism therapy.
To understand nonverbal communication, such as hand gestures.
Many children with autism do not have good non-verbal communication skills, which can greatly inhibit their ability to communicate. For example, the child may not know how to respond to a wave or know how to wave back at someone to say hello, or they may not understand that nodding can mean yes or no. One of the goals during autism therapy is to help the child get a better grasp of the typically used gestures and movements that the general population uses to communicate in the everyday world.
To better interpret facial movements and expressions.
Smiling, frowning, closing your eyes, all of these are examples of facial expressions and movements that most people use when they communicate with another individual. For a child who has autism, however, many of these facial expressions can be confusing, and many children do not use facial expressions to convey emotions in normal ways. For instance, your child may smile when they are angry or open their eyes wide when they feel happy. Through autism therapy, your child will be exposed to special learning techniques to help them grasp the meanings behind certain facial expressions.
To effectively participate in dialogue with others.
Spontaneous dialogue is one of the biggest challenges for children with autism. Even though most people spontaneously participate in conversation every day, for a child with autism, this kind of conversation can be extremely hard. The child must learn to listen to what is being spoken, gain understanding, and then aptly respond with verbal and non-verbal communication. Even though some children with autism can struggle with spontaneous conversation throughout their lives, most can see some visible improvement with ongoing therapy as children. Their communication levels may not be exactly the same as everyone else, but the goal is always to help them be more functional and capable individuals than what they would have been without therapy.