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Tips to help your non-verbal child speak

Autism affects the ability of children to communicate. Many children with autism spectrum disorder are not able to learn and speak more than a few words.

These children are non-verbal children with autism and need special teaching methods to help in their language development.

Here are some ideas that can help non-verbal children learn language.

  1. All kids love to have fun and play games. Use fun and play method to teach children to communicate. Learning based playful activities and games can be used to keep the children interested.
  2. When teaching children, sit near them and close to their eye levels. This will help them see and hear you more clearly. It will also ensure that they are focused on you and taking interest in what you are doing.
  3. Copying or mimicking the sounds and voices of the children also helps in learning communication. You can ask the children to copy you in turn. This mimicking game will help them learn new sounds and voices and slowly they will learn new words.
  4. Do not rely only on words for teaching communication. You can also use body language, hand gestures and eye contact to teach communication. Fingers, clapping, opening hands, reaching out arms are simple gestures that the child can also copy. Point at toys or objects and also imitate when the child uses gestures.
  5. Give some space and time to the children to respond. A child with autism may not immediately respond to you. Create opportunities for the children to communicate such as ask questions, looking at them and showing them that you are waiting for their response.
  6. Also when the child is trying to communicate, respond immediately. This will help the child understand that communication is important to get response from others.
  7. Keep the language simple and easy to understand. Speak single words when teaching names such as ball, book, door. Then move to two phrases as the child learns nouns such as roll ball, open door.
  8. Follow the interest of the child when teaching. If there is a particular activity or toy that the child likes, start using words related to that.
  9. Use pictures, videos, stories to help the children understand about things. Visual aids make the learning interesting and effective.
  10. Devices and apps can also be used for touch and learn activities. The use of assistive devices will depend on the comfort and interest of the child.

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