Jul 11

Episode 1: Why Teach Pretend Play? A Behavioral Perspective

Welcome to the pretend play podcast. A podcast focusing on the research and application of pretend play and language skills. We begin by discussing deficits in play identified in children diagnosed with autism, language delays, or other developmental delays. We talk about functional play, the absence of elaborated play acts, and the use of gestures and vocalizations in play. We go on to discuss the correlations between play and language and the importance of targeting them simultaneously. In addition to language, play effects other developmental domains including cognition, social, self-regulation, school readiness, and more.  

Looking more toward applications we address some common barriers we have encountered to teaching children appropriate play skills. As well as the necessary components that need to be in place when programming for pretend play.  These components include looking at the developmental sequence and the importance of a systematic approach. To close things out we look at the importance of identifying play as a separate domain and the knowledge you can acquire by observing, assessing, and teaching pretend play.

Thank you for listening! Please visit our website for more information or to purchase the Pretend Play and Language Assessment and Curriculum.

We encourage everyone to reach out to us if you have any questions about the show or suggestions on topics you would like to hear more about.  You can reach out through Facebook or e-mail Melissa at


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