Connecting Play

The focus of this level is to build joint attention, connections and interactions. Connecting in play is all about creating attachments and helping the child recognise that they can find value and joy from interacting with the key people in their life.

At this level, the child:

  • may appear uninterested in the people around them.
  • may show no interest in communicating with others.
  • may reach for what they want rather than point or gesture.
  • may cry or scream as the primary means of expressing themselves.
  • may interact briefly (i.e. for a few seconds) with familiar adults.
  • may avoid interaction with other children or people they are not familiar with.
  • may seem to want to play alone.
  • may show no interest in playing with toys.
  • may play in unusual ways (e.g. play may be highly repetitive such as constantly seeking out spinning objects or seeking out substances to filter through their fingers like sand or leaves).
  • may protest when another person interferes with their isolated or repetitive play.

Goals of the Activities:

  • Model to the child how to communicate intentionally, starting with a request.
  • Provide situations where the child will be motivated to communicate intentionally.
  • Support the child to interact with their parents/carers or other key people in their lives.
  • Support the child to take turns in interactions using body movements, eye contact, smiles and sounds.
  • Provide suggested opportunities for parents on how to join in and play with their child.
  • Teach the child how to play with simple toys and games (i.e. functional play).
Below you can view a range of Connecting in Play activities: