Autism and Gestalt Language Processing
Your child may have a diagnosis of autism, or you may be wondering about autism but you haven't sought a diagnosis. Either way, I can work with you and help you navigate this territory.
Whilst autism has its challenges, I focus on the strengths of autistic children (of which there are many!)
Is your child a Gestalt Language Processor?
Gestalt Language Processors tend to:
Listen to the musicality of language, and copy intonation patterns of whole phrases rather than single words.
Absorb language in longer chunks, so whole phrases and sentences, rather than isolated words. Songs and scripts from tv or video clips often appeal to them.
Associate specific phrases with certain sensory or emotional experiences, and make unique connections between these.
Autistic children may not say anything yet, but we can encourage their voices by making use of movement. This will help them to breathe more deeply, and vocalise more. If they can laugh, squeal and cry out in excitement, this can help build the foundations for speech development.
The Stages of Natural Language Acquisition
Modelling Language to a GLP
We model language in a very different way for a GLP.
For a stage 1 GLP, we will model whole phrases, like 'let's play with the helicopter!' and 'we can make it fly!'
For a stage 2 GLP, we model how phrases can be 'mix-and-matched'. For example 'let's roll on the therapy ball!' and 'let's jump over!'
A GLP-trained SLT will help you model the appropriate language for your child's stage.