December 18, 2014

More Imaginary Play by Autistic Son

Our son with autism continues to demonstrate his increased ability to use his imagination.  This example of improved imaginary play came about 2 weeks after receiving his glutathione shot.  It involved toys that he had played with for over a year but this time he played with them in a different way.

Imaginary Play Improves

Son with Autism Uses Imagination to Play with Toy Cars in a New Way

Autistic Son's Imaginary Play Improves

Our son was playing with his Disney Cars toys much like he always does.  All of a sudden he got an idea.  He grabbed Lightning McQueen, Chick Hicks, and the King.  He began playing with them much like normal.  This involved a lot of “vrooming”.  As all three cars were racing around Chick Hicks suddenly bumped into Lightning McQueen causing him to spin out.  Later Chick Hicks caused the King to tumble end over end.

If you haven’t seen the movie Cars then you might not realize what was going on.  Our son with autism was reenacting the final race between Chick Hicks, Lightning McQueen, and the King.  Although he had played with these cars for over a year, he had never attempted to reenact the final race in the movie.

It was fun to see him use his imagination to find a new way to play with some old toys.  One of his earlier applied behavior analysis (ABA) goals was to find new ways to play with the same toy.  This was something he really struggled with at first, but this ability has really blossomed in the last several months.

Progress with General Play Skills

Our son is doing a much better job playing in general.  Previously, it was very difficult for him to play independently.  He often had to be in the same room as Mom or me.  Recently, he has been engaging in play for large chunks of time.  It has been interesting to watch him develop this skill.  He can now focus on playing for longer periods of time. 

I don’t attribute this increased ability to play independently and to engage in imaginary play strictly to the glutathione shot.  I feel that this did benefit him to a large degree, but I also feel that these changes are due in large part to the culmination of all his other therapies.  It has been fun to watch him play with his toys in a similar manner that his younger brother does.  It will certainly be interesting to see how this area continues to develop in our autistic son.

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