Decreasing Prompt Dependency With
Children on the Spectrum
Decreasing prompt dependency is one of many essential skills and an important part of raising children and encouraging them to become more independent. Put simply, prompt dependency is where a child relies on specific prompts or commands to do what is necessary. If your child is one of many children on the spectrum, decreasing how dependent they are on prompts can be especially challenging.
A child that is too prompt-dependent will need to be told specifically to take a shower or clean their room. If you are wondering how to get your child to rely on prompts less, our autism resource center is here to help.
Reducing Prompt Dependency in Autism
When it comes to decreasing prompt dependency, the most important tip is to gradually fade away the number of prompts your child receives and be less intrusive with them as time goes on. Below, we go further into detail.
Introduce Fading Techniques as Early as Possible
Once your child learns a new skill, they should begin to fade out the dependence they have on your commands or prompts. An important fading technique that you should look to implement is saying only a part of the entire prompt so that your child has to finish the prompt themself. This helps them become more independent as they realize that they do not need to wait on your prompt to accomplish the new skill or task they have learned.
Fading rewards is also a great way to ensure that a basic skill or activity is learned. When a child masters a certain skill, giving them constant rewards could be more harmful than good. Some parents figure that they should completely faze out the rewards they give the child. Instead of the sudden removal of rewards, parents should gradually wean their child off the rewards so that the child gets more used to not getting rewarded for basic things like washing their hands or taking showers.
Sometimes, children with autism have trouble with certain external stimuli like meeting new people or being introduced to new social situations. A child who is too dependent on prompts will not know how to navigate this without the assistance of the person who is giving the prompts. Stimulus fading is an applied behavior analysis (ABA) technique where the events that cause such anxiety in someone are gradually introduced so that the child becomes more accustomed to these events as time goes on.
More About Blue Parachute
We are a leading autism resource center that provides autism home video support services and online behavioral therapy lessons for parents. We are dedicated to providing children and their parents the skills they need to live everyday life seamlessly and without obstacles. The videos available from Blue Parachute were written by Licensed and Certified Behavior Therapists.
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