Adaptive Skills Training (AST)

The Holding Hands Adaptive Skills Program addresses the practical everyday skills a child, teen, or adult needs in order to function at home and in the community. Our program targets 5 Adaptive Skills domains: self-care, communication, behavior (non-maladaptive), social skills, and play-leisure. When selecting goals, the clinical team will be aware of the individual’s limitations due to their developmental level, strengths, and individual needs. Sessions are provided within the home, community, and center. Parent training is a pivotal part of the program.

Holding Hands utilizes a relationship/developmental modality when targeting adaptive domains. The modality used is Developmental, Individual Difference, and Relationship-based (Floortime™/DIR®).

Self-Care Skills

This domain teaches the skills necessary for independent dressing, personal hygiene, eating, and toileting. Difficulties within this domain can cause stress for clients and families; by teaching the client the skills necessary to tend to their self-care needs, the client’s program will increase self-sufficiency, creating a better quality of life for the client and family.

Our Adaptive Skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the Self-Care Skills domain:

Self-Care Skills

This domain teaches the skills necessary for independent dressing, personal hygiene, eating, and toileting. Stress for the client and family can be caused by difficulties within this domain. By teaching the client the skills necessary to tend to their own self-care needs, the client’s program will increase self-sufficiency, creating a better quality of life for the client and family.

Our Adaptive Skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the Self-Care Skills domain:

  • Dressing
  • Toilet Training
  • Brushing Teeth
  • Eating
  • Shaving
  • Using Utensils
  • Community Outings
  • Washing Hands
  • Brushing Hair
  • Making Bed
  • Hygiene
  • Routine/Schedule
  • Sleep
  • Nutrition
  • Organization
  • Following Routine
  • Money Management

Communication Skills

This domain teaches the skills necessary to effectively communicate with others. Children/teens with difficulties in this domain may experience frustration, isolation, and poor self-esteem. By addressing goals for communication skills, the child will learn to communicate via a preferred style, whether it is verbal or non-verbal communication, American Sign Language (ASL), or other augmentative communication device. The client’s program will build a foundation of skills for communication in everyday interactions.

Our Adaptive Skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the Communication Skills domain:

  • Functional
  • Reciprocal
  • Spontaneous
  • Circles of Communication
  • Two-Way
  • Receptive
  • Expressive
  • Gestural
  • PECS
  • Vocalizations
  • Shared Attention
  • Emotional Regulation
  • Processing “WH” questions
  • Echolalia
  • Scripting

Social Skills

This domain teaches various skills to enable independent and successful social interaction with family and peers. These skills will support the client in interacting with others every day across different settings. The client’s program will address social skills during sessions at home and in the community.

Our Adaptive Skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the Social Skills domain:

  • Turn Taking
  • Flexibility
  • Social Pragmatics
  • Initiation
  • Sustain Interaction
  • Negotiation
  • Sharing
  • Transitions
  • Social Problem Solving
  • Community Outings
  • Greetings
  • Social Media
  • Perceptive Taking
  • Eye Contact
  • Parallel Play
  • Cooperative Play
  • Sportsmanship
  • Shared attention
  • Joint Attention
  • Community Outings
  • Following Directions
  • Abstract Thinking
  • Multi-causal Thinking
  • Emotional thinking

Behavior (Non-Maladaptive)
This domain teaches the client to adopt and practice non-maladaptive behaviors in his or her everyday life by developing a behavior support program. For example, reducing self-injurious behaviors, refer to the ABA program. Behavior support is available in the home, community, and center. The behavior domain focuses on reducing problem behaviors and increasing self-help skills. A crucial component of our program is parent involvement.

Our Adaptive skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the behavior domain:

  • Transitions
  • Regulation
  • Emotional Regulation
  • Coping Skills
  • Tantrums
  • Problem Solving-Emotional
  • Organization
  • Following Routine
  • Functional Communication
  • Manners
  • Follow Directions
  • Safety Skills (not-maladaptive)
  • Bullying
  • Cursing/teasing
  • Name calling
  • Perseverations
  • Avoiding Behaviors
  • Sensory regulation

Play-Leisure Skills
This section of the programming will focus on teaching individuals to entertain themselves and others during free and unstructured time. Individuals will be taught to engage in activities when there is free or unstructured time so that they learn to be more independent and begin engaging in activities when there is no adult directing or initiating play. This skill is crucial for individuals to learn in order to increase independence within the home.

Our Adaptive Skills program covers the following developmental deficits under the play-leisure skills domain:

  • Functional Play Skills
  • Flexibility
  • Collaborative Play
  • Symbolic Play
  • Sequencing
  • Motor Planning
  • Cooperative Play
  • Joint/Task Attention
  • Community Integration
  • Role Play
  • Goal Setting
  • Structural Play
  • Expanded Play
  • Independent
  • Community Outings