Conversations with children can be very entertaining. Kids can say the funniest things sometimes! However, when you are having a conversation with a child that has severe autism, it can be challenging. The child may not respond or understand the point you are trying to get across. Don’t give up! Here are some of our tips that may help you when trying to communicate with a child diagnosed with autism.
Pause and give your child time to process what was said to them
For children with autism, it may take them a little longer to make sense of what was said to them than a child without autism. Give them a longer time than you usually would for someone to answer. Some children need up to 10 seconds or longer to process before responding.
Use shorter sentences
Using shorter sentences gives children less to process at one time. If a child needs more time to process what someone says, less is more.
Use an exciting voice and facial expressions.
Using an exciting voice and animated facial expressions will allow the child to pay more attention to you and enjoy the conversation more.
Talk about something the child is interested in
If you are working on communication with your child, talking about a topic that interests the child is always beneficial. It is much easier to work with your child’s train of thought rather than your own. Talking about something your child is interested in can help immensely when working on communication.
If your child has a hard time understanding what you are trying to say, a visual might be beneficial. This can be a social story or acting out what you are asking them to do.
Repeat yourself the same way every time
If you need to repeat what you said or what you are requesting, repeat it the same way every time. Varying how you say something can make it more difficult for the child to process what is being said to them.
If you want to strengthen your communication with your child with autism, reach out to LEAP Autism Therapy. We can help develop a plan for your child.