Earlier we discussed how perseverative activity—such as lining up blocks— may be gradually transformed into interactive play. The key strategy is to negotiate the therapist's acceptance within the child's action-object system. Once the child tolerates and then accepts the therapist's slight adjustments of the child's systems, it is then possible for interactive symbolic play within the child's expanded system to develop. Then, instead ofmerely lining up blocks next to each other, the child gradually learns to participate in interactive play with cars going in both directions along the "roads," and going up and down ramps (see Figure 4.1). Soon the child begins to spontaneously initiate symbolic activity on which the therapist can readily build.
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When parents help their children learn to read, they help open the door to a new world. As a parent, you can begin an endless learning chain: You read to your children, they develop a love of stories and poems, they want to read on their own, they practice reading, and finally they read for their own information or pleasure. They become readers, and their world is forever expanded and enriched.