- String beads like no-one's business.
- Do a variety of puzzles; as she learns new puzzles she is doing harder ones.
- Make pictures with shapes.
- Build towers with blocks.
- Play with a Mr. Potato Head and put the pieces in random places to make a fun head.
- Complete shape sorters.
- Feed her little baby, wipe her face, give her a soother.
- Cut a piece of pretend birthday cake, put it on a plate, blow out the candles, and decorate it.
- Pour herself some tea, drink the tea, put some bread on a plate, butter it (and she will sometimes say "ahm-nom-nom" when she pretends to eat).
I have often wondered if teaching pretend play in this way is effective because I wonder if Alanna "gets" what she is doing. But then I remember that young children engage in pretend play by imitating what their parents do, and that is how Alanna learned too. Also, I see she generalizes, which tells me she gets it. For example, she might pretend to eat something else other than bread, so I know she gets that plastic food is something you pretend to eat. She feeds her baby but also feeds her bear and even her brother!
Play is an important part of intervention and I am glad we have put some focus on it!