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The PLAY Project

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Kids Walking with Hula Hoop and Football

Parents spend more time with their children than all of their teachers and therapists combined. The PLAY Project®, a home-based intervention program designed for children ages 2 to 6 with autism, teaches skills to help children learn and grow.

As your child’s best PLAY partner, you can provide many hours of high quality intervention throughout the day. This program will teach parents practical ways of making every interaction with their child a growing and learning experience. Bath-time, meals, outdoor play: each of these daily routines can be used to help your child with autism build meaningful relationships.

PLAY is short for Play and Language for Autistic Youngsters. The PLAY Project uses Home Consultants to train the parents or caregivers in their home to work with their children.

Our staff will make home visits and use video technology to give families detailed guidance about ways to implement these skills at home with their children.

Created by Richard Solomon, MD, and based on the DIR® (Developmental, Individual Differences, Relationship-based) theory of Stanley Greenspan, MD, and Serena Wieder, PhD, the PLAY Project is a national autism training and research center, which includes training agencies, parents and communities about the importance of early autism intervention. The PLAY Project is operating in three countries and 27 states in the U.S. More than 300 trained home consultants serve more than 1,000 children on the autism spectrum every year.

Visit the national PLAY Project website.

Home visits allow the Consultant to see your child in the place where he or she is most comfortable, so the Consultant can see how he/she acts most naturally. The Home Consultant will videotape segments of the home visits to monitor your child's progress and give suggestions for more effective techniques. This allows the Home Consultant and your family to design and implement an individualized plan for your child.

The Home Consultation Program typically includes:

  • Family support
  • Ten visits per year
  • Three-hour sessions roughly divided between one hour of modeling, one hour of coaching the family, and one hour of feedback
  • Selected videotaping of PLAY interactions with written evaluations and feedback
  • Assistance with IFSP or IEP Goals
  • Resources for families — handouts and referrals to other types of comprehensive therapies (Speech & Language, Occupational Therapy, and so on), if needed

The Home Consulting Program has a thorough program evaluation that includes: 

  • Documentation of progress using a combination of family information, various questionnaires/assessments and video rating scales
  • Periodic surveys to assess family satisfaction with consulting services

Free 30-Minute Consultation

If you would like to come in for a free, 30-minute consultation to see if your child would benefit from the PLAY Project, feel free to email or call:

Dawn Heino - Occupational Therapist
dawn.heino@multicare.org
253-697-5200

For more information, you may also contact:

Jill Conner - Speech Pathologist
jill.conner@multicare.org
253-697-5200

Learn More About the DIR/Floortime Model

Interdisciplinary Council on Development and Learning (ICDL)