eProof005 9781495821264_Early Interventi
The exercises in Early Intervention for Children with ASD: Considerations bring to light some general principles in early behavioral intervention for children with ASD. We illuminate analysis and synthesis and illustrate how exercises can be employed to teach foundational capacities such as attention and memory. We stress the importance of 'intrinsic program coherence' as we adumbrate different kinds of relations between individual programs. The selective array of programs and considerations is designed to assist clinicians in curriculum development.


Basic Expressive Prepositions (2)



• To teach the child describe relations involving the simple locatives on and

under, next to, behind, and in front of. Relevance of others targeted by employing point.

Set up


• A large base object (e.g., chair) and a smaller ambulant object. The child

faces the base object.



• Step 1: Place the ambulant object (e.g. block) in any position relative to

the base object, (a chair) and ask: “Where is the block?” Prompt correct

answer (“on,” “under,” etc.) and fade prompts over successive trials. (a)

Introduce additional locations one at a time. When introducing a new

location, always randomize it with acquired ones. (b) Vary the ambulant

object. (c) Intersperse expressive and receptive trials.

• Step 2: Introduce additional factual questions such as “What color is the

___?” (see #120), “What color is this?” (while pointing to an object) (see

#122), and questions involving pronominalization (see #144). For instance,

point to the block and ask; “What is it?” When the child answers, move it

to a new location (e.g., under the chair) and ask; “Where is it?

• Step 3: Place two different base objects next to each other and an ambulant

object (e.g., spoon) relative to one of them. Ask: “Where is the spoon?”

Prompt correct answer (e.g., “it is under the chair”) and fade prompts

over successive trials. Place the spoon in another location and repeat the

procedure. Continue until the child discriminates between all locations

with both base objects. When accomplished introduce additional factual

questions (see step 2).

• Step 4: The instructor places two different base objects next to each other

and an ambulant object in each of the possible locations (a total of 10

locations). Asks: “Where is the spoon?” “Where is the cup?” etc. The

child answers using prepositions and location (e.g., it is under the chair”)

and fade prompt over successive trials. When the child scans and answers

fluently, “reverse” the question; “What is [preposition] [location]?’ (e.g.,

“What is on the chair?”). Prompt correct answer (e.g., “a cup” or “the

cup”). Randomize “What” and “Where” questions and fade prompts over

successive trials. When acquired, introduce additional questions unrelated

to prepositions (see step 2).


• The child may point to the location of an object in cases when you want the

child to tell you. In such instances, simply ask the child to tell you where

it is. If this becomes a habit, modify your instruction so that you say, “Tell

me where the (object) is.”


Nominal Pronouns (4): Shifting speakers



  • To teach the child to use nominative pronouns “I” and “You”, combined with proper names


Set Up


  • Three or more persons required

        Have the child hold an object (e.g. cup)  and you and an assistant each hold          different objects. You and the assistant rotate asking.



  • Step one: You and assistant rotate asking, “Who has the  “X” (e.g. cup) vs “Who has “Y” (e.g. ball), “Who has “Z” (e.g. spoon). When you ask questions regarding the assistant, the child refers to her by name.  When you are the spectator and the assistant is asking questions ,the child will refer to you by your proper name and the assistant as “you”.  Of course the child always refers to themselves as “I” and when you are asking to “you” as “you".


  • Step two: You or assistant ask the child “What do you have” , “What do I have”, “What does (person/she/proper name have?)”.

       Prompt correct responses according to who is in possession of each object,           i.e, I have the X or You have Y, ‘Proper name’ (Sally) has Z . This is more                   difficult than step one because if requires transforming the pronoun.
       Make sure to change what each of you is holding so that the child will not             memorize responses.


  • This exercise is not only matter of answering questions. It entails personal deixis; the right answer depends on who is asking. The primary goal is to teach the child to say “you” when the speaker asks the child what the speaker is holding, to say “I” when the speakers asks about what the child is holding and to use a proper name when the child is asked about what any other person is holding (if that person is not the speaker). This discrimination requires considerable practice.


      If the child struggles with these arrangements, segment instruction into                  smaller ‘switched’ sequences as described in step 3 of Assigning Pronouns to        Pictures of Persons 1.

Who-Questions (3)



• To establish a rudimentary understanding of the pronoun “Who” in the

context of “Where” and “What”. Use of non-specific referent(s) pulls for social awareness/relevance of others.


Set up


• Two to three (or more) persons are situated around the room or sit in a

circle. Familiar objects are placed around the room.

• This exercise is a combination of previous exercises



• Randomize (a) “What is over there?” (b) “Where is the [object]?” (c) “Is the

[object] over there?” (d) “Where is [person]? followed by (e) “What does

she have?” (f) Who has the [object]?” followed by (g) “Where is she?” (h)

“Who is over there?” (i) “Is [person] over there ?” (points), (j) “What did

you give to [person 1 or 2]?” (see “Who Questions (2)”, #160), (k) “Who

did you give the [object]?” (or “Who did you give the object to?”) see “Who

Questions (2)” #160)

• Same arrangement as above. Add the question: “Where is the [object]?”

when someone is holding the object. The child should answer, “[person]

has [it]” rather than “over there.” Randomize questions about objects in

someone’s possession (“[person] has it”) and not in someone’s possession

(“over there”).

Selection-Based Imitation (2)


  • To further develop pointing, flexible shift of attention, joint attention, and tracking.

  • A direct extension of “Selection-Based Imitation 1” (#9)

  • This version of SBI controls for the problem of positional prompts.

Set up

  • Sit directly across the child at the table. Have an row of pictures in front of you and a row of corresponding pictures in front of the child. Arrange the field so the pictures no longer correspond by position within the rows. The rows may be arranged so both are oriented toward the child (see Figure 1.2).


  • Say “do this” and point to a picture displayed in the array in front of you. The child then points to the matching picture in front of him.


  • The child may copy the position of your finger as opposed finding the target picture (e.g., if you point to the far left picture. He may do the same whether the pictures match or not, or he may first point to the picture corresponding to the position of the your finger and then switch to the correct picture. To address these problems you could, (a) scale back to two pictures and increase the field size when the child performs proficiently, (b) block the child’s response to permit sufficient scanning time. (For instance, the child’s effort may be blocked until he observes your response and shifts attention to his own array) and (c) interrupt “position pointing” and introduce a new trial after a brief delay (two, three seconds).

Additional sample exercises available on Amazon

       Table of Contents  


  • Basic Identity Matching

  • Matching Objects to Pictures

  • Bring Same

  • Bring Same: Two Steps

  • Sorting (1)

  • Sorting (2)

  • Touch Same

  • Find Same

Selection-Based Imitation

  •  Selection-Based Imitation (SBI) (1)

  •  Selection-Based Imitation (2)

  •  Selection-Based Imitation: Two Steps


Task Completion

  •  Task Completion

  •  Sequential Matching (TPSM)

  •  Following Lists (“shopping”)

  •  Search (1)

  •  Search (match1)

  •  Search (match 2)


  • Gross Motor Imitation

  • Fine Motor Imitation

  • Multi-Step Imitation

  • Object Imitation (1)

  • Object Imitation (2)

  • Block Imitation (1)

  • Block Imitation (2)

  • Block Imitation (3)

  • Follow the Leader

  • Verbal Imitation

  • Third Person Imitation

  • Observational Learning

Basic Receptive Language

  • One Step Instructions

  • Two Step Instructions

  • Receptive Object Identification

  • 2-D Object Identification

  • Receptive Person Identification

  • Receptive Body Parts Identification

  • Bring Me

  • Receptive Block Building

  • Two-Step Receptive Objects


Tracking/Joint Attention

  • Tracking 1

  • Tracking 2 (Direct Point)

  • Tracking 3 (Object Location)

  • Tracking 4 (Two Objects)

  • Tracking 5 (Go to Location)

  • Tracking 6 (Combined Tracking and Receptive)

  • Tracking 7 (Alternated Tracking and Receptive)

  • Shifting Between Instruction Modalities


 Naming and requesting

  •  Expressive Naming (Objects)

  •  Expressive Naming 2 (Body Parts)

  •  Expressive Naming 3 (Persons)

  •  Expressive Naming: Multiple Presentation Forms

  •  Tracking and Orienting

  •  Sequential Naming

  •  Self-Paced Naming

  •  Naming through Observational Learning

  •  Requesting Desired Objects and Activities

  •  Sequential Matching: Interrupted chain

  •  Blocked Response (Instruction)

  •  Requesting from second person

  •  Managing Listener’s Responses


Integrating basic learning skills

  •  Naming to Requesting (contrived)

  •  Requesting to Naming

  •  Receptive-Expressive Correspondence

  •  Receptive to Requesting

  •  Matching, Receptive, and Naming

  •  Say versus Do (1)

  •  Say versus Do (2)

  •  Naming by Exclusion

  •  Tracking/Naming Hybrid

  •  Retrieving by Name and Tracking-combined


Expanding basic naming

  •  Receptive Locations

  •  Receptive Locations and Action

  •  Naming Stationary Objects

  •  Naming locations

  •  Reporting locations (1)

  •  Reporting locations (2)

  •  Declaring destination (1)

  •  Declaring destination (2)



  •  Expressive Actions (1): Following an Instruction

  •  Expressive Actions (2): Following a Model

  •  Expressive Actions (3)

  •  Progressive Actions (1)

  •  Progressive Actions (2)

  •  Past Tense Actions (1): Following Instructions

  •  Past Tense Actions (2): Following a model

  •  Past Tense Actions (3): Location and action

  •  Tense Discrimination

  •  Tense Discrimination of Progressive Actions

  •  Tense Discrimination: Reporting observations



  • Functions of Objects: Problem Solving by Tool Use

  • Functions of Objects (Demonstration)

  • Functions of Objects: Receptive (1)

  • Functions of Objects: Receptive (2)

  • Functions of Objects: Naming (1)

  • Functions of Objects: Naming (2)

  • Functions of Objects: Multiple Examples

  • Function of objects: Answering Questions (1)

  • Function of Objects: Answering Questions (2)


 Parts and Whole

  • Receptive Identification of Parts

  • Distinguishing between Parts and Whole

  • Part-whole association (1)

  • Part-whole association (2)

  •  Listing parts



Naming by Different Modalities

  • Naming by Touch

  • Naming by Taste

  • Distinguishing between Salty, Sweet, Sour

  • Naming and Identifying Objects By Sound

  • Naming by inference (Object Permanence)

  • Locating by Inference


Transactions and Turn taking

  • Turn Taking: Ball Play

  • Turn taking: Delivery

  • Turn Taking: Matching game

  • Reciprocal statements 1

  • Reciprocal statements

Colors and Shapes

  • Matching colors

  • Receptive Color Identification

  • Receptive Colors: Conditional discrimination

  • Receptive Colors: “That” Constructions

  • Naming colors (1)

  • Naming colors (2)

  • Naming colors (3)

  • Naming colors (4)

  • Naming colors (5)

  • Naming colors (6)

  • Naming colors (7)

  • Sorting shapes

  • Receptive and expressive shapes

Big and Little

  • Receptive Big-Little (Identical)

  • Receptive Big-Little (Non-identical)

  • Receptive big-little (Conditional discrimination)

  • Receptive big-little: Name and Feature

  • Expressive Big-Little (1)

  • Expressive Big-Little (2)



  • Singular-plural (1)

  • Singular-plural (2)

  • Singular-plural (3)

  • Singular-plural (4)

Answering factual questions

  • Yes-No: Desires

  • Yes-No: Interrupted chain

  • Yes-No: Factual Questions (1)

  • Yes-No: Factual Questions (2)

  • Yes-No: Factual Questions (3)

  • Yes-No: Factual Questions (4)

  • Yes-No: Factual Questions (5)

  • Yes-No: Correcting Statements


Who What Where Distinctions

  • Where: Deixis (1)

  • Where: Deixis (2)

  • Where: Multiple scenarios

  • What/Where distinction (1)

  • What/where distinction (2)

  • Who questions (1)

  • Who questions (2)

  • Who questions (3)

  • Expressive: Who-What


Complex receptive instructions

  • Three component instructions (1)

  • Three component instructions (2)

  • Three step instructions

  • Basic Rule Following

  • Demonstratives

  • Demonstratives (1)

  • Demonstratives (2)

  • Demonstratives: Matching (1)

  • Demonstratives: Matching (2)



  • Receptive Negation (1)

  • Receptive Negation (2)

  • Expressive Negation (1)

  • Expressive Negation (2)

  • What’s Missing? (1)

  • What’s Missing? (2)



  • Receptive categorization

  • Naming Categories (1)

  • Naming Categories (2)

  • Reciprocal categories

  • Describing Kinds

  • Sorting Category Items


  • Basic Receptive Prepositions (1)

  • Basic Expressive Prepositions (1)

  • Basic Receptive Prepositions (2)

  • Basic Expressive Prepositions (2)

  • Self Referential “Behind” and “In Front Of”

  • Self Positioning

  • Behind and “in front of” of Others

  • Front and back; Aspects of Objects

  • Object Relative “In Front/behind

  • Asking “Where” questions


Personal pronouns

  • Genitive Personal Pronouns (1)

  • Genitive Personal Pronouns (2)

  • Genitive personal pronouns (3)

  • Nominal personal pronouns (1)

  • Nominal personal pronouns (2)

  • Nominal personal pronouns (3)

  • Nominal personal pronouns (4): Shifting Speakers

  • Nominal personal pronouns (5)

  • Combining Nominal and Genitive Personal Pronouns

  • Assigning Pronouns to Pictures of Persons (1)

  • Assigning pronouns to Pictures of Persons (2)

  • Assigning pronouns to Pictures of Persons (3)

  • Pronouns Combined with Yes-No

  • Personal Pronouns: Turn Taking (1)

  • Personal Pronouns: Turn Taking (2)

  • Personal Pronouns: Turn taking (3)

  • Personal Pronouns: Turn taking (4)