The Benefits of Minecraft for Children with Autism

The Benefits of Minecraft for Children with AutismMinecraft is being used in schools around the world to promote creativity, problem solving, and teamwork. The educational version, MinecraftEdu, is specifically designed for school use and provides teachers more control over the server and functionality. Children everywhere have fallen in love this game and educators have taken notice.

What makes Minecraft so fun to play (and also why it is a perfect game for children with autism) is there are no rules, no clear objectives, and no winning or losing. Kids are free to create and experiment in the world as they wish. For younger children developing early play skills, a lot can be worked on in the realm of Minecraft, including imitation, taking turns, observational learning, and pretend play. Setting up a server and playing Minecraft with a child is a good way to work on these skills that can be difficult to target in real world situations.

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5 Ways to Use Your Smartphone’s Camera to Create Learning Opportunities

5 Ways to Use your Smartphone Camera to Create Learning Opportunities and Promote Generalization

1. Scavenger Hunt

If you are working on object labels or lessons like features or functions, you can create lists for the child to take pictures of around the house. If the child can’t read, you can stay with him or her and read the labels out loud. You can even time the child and have them try to beat their record!

Sample Lists:lol

Objects: Cup, ball, desk, pencil, clock, etc.

Features: Something with a nose, something with hair, etc.

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Finding New Uses for Existing Technology

When I was a therapist working with children with autism, one question that always ran through my mind was, “how do I make every activity a valuable teaching opportunity?” For me, the easy part of working with kids was the “work.” Sitting down with a child and running through a set of trials was straightforward. Discrete trial training (DTT) is structured, simple, and when done correctly, very effective. These trials help kids quickly acquire new skills and language in a very structured setting. The challenging and fun part of my job as a therapist was what happened in between those sets of trials.

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