Intensive interaction is an approach to teaching the pre-speech fundamentals of communication to children and adults who have severe learning difficulties or autism, and who are still at an early stage of communication development. This book is a practical guide to help those wishing to implement intensive interaction in their setting, and it provides detailed advice and step-by-step guidance as well as a consideration of all the issues associated with carrying out this approach.

Some Associated Issues and Topics

Some associated issues and topics

‘Age-Appropriateness’ and Developmental Appropriateness

In our field of work, for many years now, there has been a fashion for employing a notion of what has been termed ‘age-appropriateness’. In its crudest form, it seems to be a viewpoint that is something like this:

‘People who have severe learning difficulties should only have experiences in line with their chronological ages.’

There is no doubt that the managers and practitioners who have this viewpoint and operate practices arising from it have in mind a laudable motive such as the giving of esteem and respect to a socially disadvantaged person.

However, the result has often been what we and many others view ...

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