Adapting Communication Tips Improves Kids’ Communication and Behaviour
Are you at your wits end when your child is having a hard time communicating?
Sure communication tips can be helpful for kids’ behavior.
Know how they could be so much better?
By learning from kids and putting fun and motivation into the following 5 communication tips:
Tip #1: Use a visual picture schedule. This helps kids know what activities they are about to do and when they will be done or get a break.
It needs FUN!
Let your child peel off a visual picture after doing each activity and pretend to “feed” something.
After completing all activities on the schedule, your child earns a reward from a cool bag filled with tiny toys.
Tip #2: Talk with your child using simple language.
Use familiar vocabulary and short sentences to make it easier for your child to understand what you are saying and asking him or her to do.
Give a reason to care!
Tell your child the benefits or offer enthusiastic praise.
Tip #3: Be face-to-face, looking at your child. Eye contact helps with attending and listening to directions.
Entice your child to watch your face!
A puppet held close to your face is more fun to look at. Because a puppet’s eyes don’t move, plus it doesn’t give off any physical energy; it’s easier for your child to look at.
Tip #4: Pair a timer or noise maker with a related picture or sign for “all done”. These let your child know that it’s soon time to end whatever they are enjoying.
Be sensitive to “trigger” words like Stop and All Done!
These powerful words can bring on a negative reaction or meltdown.
Instead, use another expression like, “Put it on pause.” Build up your child’s trust with this new expression that he or she will get to do their favorite activity again and soon.
Tip #5: Kids benefit from repeatedly hearing a social story. Social stories have related visual pictures, simple language and communication tips.
Boost story comprehension and interest!
Role-play. First YOU act out your child’s role. Show your child their less desirable communication – then how it changes with each communication tip from the social story. Switch roles so your child gets to practice and experience using each communication tip.
Now it’s your turn… Think of how you’ll improve one communication tip so it’s more fun and motivating for your child.