Early intervention, known formally as Early Intensive Behavioural Intervention (EIBI) is the most effective evidence-based therapy for children with autism. As such, it is the program which all our Lizard kids participate in. Each individualised early intervention program is based on the principle of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA).
There are a couple of features to this program of treatment that makes it very effective, but the main principle is that it helps children develop in skills areas that they have deficiencies around language, social, cognition and play. This is achieved by encouraging children to do more of the things that provides them with positive reinforcement and less of what has negative consequences for them.
The goal of early intervention programs is to give the child a development trajectory and rate of learning that approaches that of a typically developing peer. This is achieved through a couple of key processes:
1) The program starts early; as soon as the diagnosis is confirmed, a early intervention program should begin, in order to achieve the greatest gains. The best results are achieved if the EIBI program starts with a child under the age of 2.
2) The program is intensive; at minimum an early intervention program should involve 20 hours per week, and we recommend 30-40
3) The program is highly tailored; at commencement we assess each individual child’s strength and weaknesses before building the program. That program will focus on the weaknesses, and then the process of learning those skills are broken down into tiny steps before being taught systematically.
Why Is Early Intervention Right For Your Child?
In addition to being the program treatment that is best supported with research and heavily scrutinised and peer-reviewed, and therefore proven to be the most effective, early intervention has the unique ability to treat each child as an individual, and work on their unique challenges.
What Do I Need To Do?
Early intervention treatments have to be intensive which means committing to 20-40 hours of therapy each week. families are encouraged to be involved to enhance their knowledge of the skills and supports needed for their child.
Lizard offers a Full Service model where we supervise, manage and provide staff for your child’s therapy program. There is also a Supervision model where you are able to find your own behaviour therapists and/or complete some of the therapy hours yourself. Parents who are involved will be able to apply the same methods and activities for their child, thus allowing the child to continuous grow and develop their skills.
Play is an important part of the therapy, so the child will not become bored or agitated by the intensity of an early intervention program. Here at Lizard, we ensure that each child is participating in a fun, interactive learning environment which enables them to reach their full potential.