Applied behavioral analysis (ABA) is a scientifically proven therapeutic approach for children with autism that focuses on improving communication, social skills, and adaptive behaviors. One important aspect of ABA therapy is the use of structured play groups, which are designed to provide opportunities for children with autism to engage in social and play activities in an environment that is safe, therapeutic, and supportive.
At Rising Above ABA, we understand the importance of using structured play groups as part of a comprehensive ABA treatment plan. Our team of experienced behavioral therapists provides individualized, evidence-based interventions to support each child’s growth in communication, social skills, and independent living skills.
What Is a Structured Play Group?
A structured play group is a type of intervention that involves setting up a scheduled series of play sessions for children with autism. The play group is usually led by a trained ABA therapist and includes activities that are designed specifically to help children with autism improve their social and play skills, communication, and behavior.
Each session of the structured play group is tailored to the needs and abilities of the participating children, and typically follows a structured routine that includes specific activities and goals. The therapist provides guidance and support throughout the session, using techniques such as positive reinforcement to encourage appropriate behavior.
How Can Structured Play Groups Fit Into ABA Therapy?
Structured play groups are an important component of ABA therapy because they provide a supportive environment for children with autism to learn and practice social skills, communication, and other adaptive behaviors. By participating in the play group, children with autism learn how to interact with others, develop friendships, and engage in meaningful play.
Structured play groups can also help children with autism reduce undesired behaviors and increase positive behaviors. For example, the therapist may use positive reinforcement to encourage appropriate behavior, such as sharing toys or taking turns. Over time, these positive behaviors become more natural, making it easier for the child to interact with others in a positive way.
The Benefits of Structured Play Groups for Children with Autism
Just a few of the benefits of this kind of intervention include:
- Improved social skills – Through structured play groups, children with autism develop social skills such as turn-taking, sharing, and eye contact. As they practice these skills in a supportive environment, they become more comfortable engaging in social interactions.
- Enhanced communication – Structured play groups provide opportunities for children with autism to practice communication skills, such as speaking with others and expressing their needs. Through repetition and positive reinforcement, they can develop these skills and use them in everyday situations.
- Reduced anxiety – Children with autism can experience anxiety in social situations, which can make it difficult for them to play with others. Structured play groups are designed to be safe and supportive environments, allowing children to become more comfortable and less anxious as they practice social skills.
- Improved behavior – By participating in structured play groups, children with autism learn appropriate social and play behaviors through positive reinforcement. This can help reduce undesired behaviors, such as aggression or tantrums, and encourage positive behaviors, such as sharing and taking turns.
- Increased independence – Structured play groups help children with autism become more independent by teaching them skills such as problem-solving, self-regulation, and self-help skills. As they develop these skills, they become more confident and self-sufficient.
Every step of the way, our experienced and dedicated therapists are there to support your child and ensure that they reach their full potential.
Call Rising Above ABA Today
Structured play groups are an essential part of ABA therapy, providing children with autism with a safe and supportive environment in which to learn and practice social skills, communication, and other adaptive behaviors. By participating in structured play groups, children with autism can develop an improved sense of self-worth and increase their ability to engage positively with others. If you’re looking for a structured play group in Newton, MA, contact Rising Above ABA today to learn more about our services.