The purpose of joint attention is to develop the child’s ability to focus on what the other party is talking about or referring to. According to C’s therapist, this is an important skill to learn and an activity to be done on a daily basis as we want to teach the child to notice things, to notice things that he or she cares about, and to notice things that others care about. This helps to build on the skills necessary to develop conversational skills.
This is a series of activities that I will be adding along the way once my child has master the the concept (objective/s) of the lesson.
- Use of sentence stems spontaneously: “It’s a…”, “This is a…”, “I have a…”
- A variety of plastic fruits (with a few of the names unknown to the child)
- Drawstring bag
- Blank notebook (Optional)
- Put the fruits in the drawstring bag.
- Pull to close the bag, leaving a small space enough for the hands to reach in and take out the fruit
- Explained to C that we will be take turns ( Note: this is done after the lesson on ‘Let’s take turns‘) to take out one fruit from the bag and name it.
- Takes a fruit out and say the name of the fruit in this manner, “I have a…” (Note: I wrote the sentence stem on the blank notebook as C is a visual learner)
- When C takes out the celery, which he does not know the name of this fruit, he will give a lot of random answers. I will prompt him by saying, “What…”
- C already knows this prompt and will say, “What is this?”
- I will say, “C, this is a celery”.
- “C, repeat after mummy, this is a celery” (Point to visual cue before verbalising)
- After C repeats after me, I will say, “Yes, it’s a celery.”
C really enjoys taking things out of the draw string bag and seeing what he is holding. His joy reminds me of a child opening a gift box for the first time and wondering what it will contain inside. It has also reminded me the child-like innocence and the easily contentment in kids. Perhaps if we would all have less things in this world and be more contented with having less, this world might just be less complicated.
Other social language related activities that we have done: