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Language and Communication make initiations to join activities  This resource has been viewed by a moderator.


Pupils make initiations to join activities and to respond appropriately to other's actions and initiations.

Early years skill:not specified
Early years typical range:not specified
P-scales/Curriculum skill:PSHE and Citizenship
P-scales/Curriculum level:P7
TAP skill:Social Interaction
TAP level:TAP42
Pre/Nat. Curriculum Area:not specified
Pre/Nat. Curiculum Standard:not specified
Section:Primary (5-11yrs) info
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Activity/strategy name and materials required How to do the activity Key principles for doing the activity and comments
Asking to join an activity with other children

Social story

Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) strip with the words 'I want to join in please.'

1. You will need the cooperation of a few other children to act as role models.

2. Set up an attractive activity e.g. playing a simple turn taking game like marble run or with a garage or making a junk model. The sort of games that happen during wet play.

3.Explain to the group of children that your child will ask to join in their game and will try to take turns properly etc.

4. Prepare your child for joining-in in two ways

Write a social story about how to join in with others' games and use this a number of times before helping the child join a game

Assemble a PECS strip with 'I want to join in please.' on it. Keep this always made up and easily available for any joining-in opportunities that develop

5. Read the social story as you watch a group of children playing a game that your child might want to join-in.

6. Help the child identify a group of children it would be OK for him/her to join in a game with and use hand over hand modelling to take the PECS strip with " I want to join-in please' on it. Help your child hand the PECS strip to a child who will be able to take it and listen and wait as your child follows the pictures on his/her PECS strip and asks to join in.

7. You may need to stay with the child to support turn taking and make sure that the game runs smoothly.

8. As the child gets used to the social story and using his 'I want to join in' strip you should be able to step back a little

You could use this activity during wet play times, or in the playground - you will need to support the children to play a structured active game, e.g. hopscotch.

Choosing a person to play a game with

Laminated card 'Can I play a game with....' Example.


Some simple games.

Timer (optional)

Start with 4 children in a group, or one child with the possibility of them choosing someone to play with.

Explain to the child that they can use the card to choose someone to play a game with.

Put the names of the children they could choose on the card, using the sticky notes.

Allow the child to choose one name, and take the other names off the board. Help the child use the phrase 'Can I play a game with X?'

Take the board and support your child to ask the other child 'Can I play a game with you?'

If they say yes, the pair can play a game. You may need to support them to ensure that they take turns and follow simple rules.

This can be used in the playground, provided there are at least two children who are willing to be chosen. If there are, the activity will be to play a specific game.

It may be necessary to have a card with 'you' on it, to help the child use the phrase 'Can I play a game with you' when they are speaking directly to the relevant person.

Sometimes children play a game for a while, but then find it difficult to stop and to do something else. They want to do everything with the chosen person. If this happens, specify that they are only playing the game for e.g. 5 minutes, and use the timer to time them. At the end of the 5 minutes, your child should either choose someone else to play with or choose something to do independently.

Going on an errand together

Another child;

An easy errand;

Prompt card. Example.

1. Try and think of an errand that your child has to do each day.

2. Call your child over and tell them what you need them to do. (E.g. can you take this to Miss Smith next door?)

3. Ask them who they want to take with them.

4. Encourage them to go to that child and say "Child's name, can you come with me".

5. The child has to go with the other child and complete the errand together.

Make the errands simple, which require just giving an object or a letter to another adult who is aware the child is coming.

Praise the child for asking the other child.

Give praise to both children for completing the task well.

Encourage your child to ask different children.

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