[Source: Psych Central]
Finding a setting that allows autistic kids to socialize with more normally developing peers is often a Catch-22 for parents.
For while autistic youth need significant practice to develop social skills, deficits in this skill set often make play, and associating with similar age kids challenging.
Research by Dr. Pamela Wolfberg, a professor of special education and communicative disorders at San Francisco State University, provides a solution by developing a different type of play group that focuses on collaborative rather than adult-directed activities.
A new report shows that such “Integrated Play Groups,” or IPGs, developed by Wolfberg over several years, are effective in teaching children with autism the skills they need to interact with their peers and engage in symbolic play such as pretending.