Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Video: 6 Years Old - Lizzie is Reading!

We had some family over last night, and Lizzie was so excited! She grabbed her newest book Go Dog Go and wanted to show everyone how she could read. Lizzie started reading to us over the Christmas break and continues to enjoy it every day. We are absolutely thrilled that she learned to read in her kindergarten year! This is only the second or third time Lizzie has read this book, and she does a great job of both sounding out and remembering the words.

Video: 6 Years Old - Unstructured Play

In this video, Lizzie has her friends Lillie and Natalie over to play. Cristina facilitates the play date. Lizzie is doing a better job of staying with and playing with her friends in an unstructured environment. In my opinion, this is where the true deficit of a person with autism is the most obvious. They either lack the desire to be with others and/or just don't know what to do with them once they are with others. It is our hope and prayer that Lizzie will eventually be indistinguishable from her peers even in unstructured environments.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Video: 6 Years Old - Monster - ahhh!

In this video from 02/09, Cristina is working with Lizzie on tolerating her bringing a new idea in play, engaging in play by using Cristina's ideas, building bridges between Cristina's ideas and hers and expanding play by bringing a new idea related to play that is connected to Cristina's idea. All that to say, she is really starting to do a great job with these concepts, and it is so much fun to see these things finally clicking for her!

Video: 6 Years Old - Planning Ahead

Lizzie is engaging in more complex planning ahead. This used to be extremely hard for her and when we started we had to work on one immediate future action at a time. She is able to plan ahead a whole scene here and stick to her plan in this video. Planning ahead is an extremely important organizational skill that takes so much time to teach. If you look back at the video posted on 12/1/2006, you will see Lizzie when this skill was first introduced. We started out with such simple things like saying, "I am going to touch your nose." We would then touch her nose. Amazing how far she has come. We are so thankful!

Video: 6 Years Old - Pretend Play

This first video is from when Lizzie was 3 1/2 years old in June of 2006. At this time, Lizzie never had much interest in playing the way a typical child would play. It was sad to realize that she didn't know how to play with toys. She especially didn't understand pretend play. You will see in this video, Allison is working on pretend play. Lizzie doesn't enjoy this, and the only way that she is willing to do this is if the thing she really wants to do is withheld from her, and then once she has completed the "task", she regains access to it.

The video below was taken in 02/09. You will see how far Lizzie has come with her play! She LOVES to pretend play with her dollhouse. In fact, she now spends hours playing each day. The play in itself is reinforcing and fun for her. This took years of therapy to achieve, and we are so thankful that Lizzie is able to engage with others in pretend play. The give and take required in pretend play transfers into life in so many ways. Such a difference!!! Yeah!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Video: 6 years old - The Mommy Role

The above videos are from October 2008. In the first video, Cristina introduces a new target of getting Lizzie to give instructions in play. You will see how she struggles to give instructions and Cristina then gives her choices and questions to prompt her. In the second video, Lizzie is able to assume the mommy role for a short time.

The next video, taken in February 2009, shows how Lizzie does a much better job assuming the mommy role for a longer time period and giving more instructions.