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Tom gets 'play'

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Student Tom
Age 8
Year 4
School Primary

Tom has the support of a teacher aide throughout his day as he works alongside his year 4 peers. Tom is not yet talking, although he is making some sounds. We have spent three-and-a-half years working on a play programme called Floor Time.

Essentially, we have been encouraging Tom to look, to take a turn, or to respond to any suggestion of play. Before 2008, Tom looked at play objects for brief periods only (less than 10 seconds). Although Tom usually engages in solitary or parallel play, he has recently begun to independently seek contact with other children. Another recent development has been Tom’s increasing interest in some of the play equipment his peers use, such as balls and skipping ropes. Within these stories, we refer to Tom’s use of a “Mighty Mo”. This is a device that has pictures Tom can press and a spoken word conveys his need.


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