Academic journal article Exceptional Children

Using Video Prompting to Teach Leisure Skills to Students with Significant Disabilities

Academic journal article Exceptional Children

Using Video Prompting to Teach Leisure Skills to Students with Significant Disabilities

Article excerpt

People with significant disabilities often have an abundance of free time but lack a repertoire of leisure skills that would allow them to use that free time in constructive ways (Solish, Perry, & Minnes, 2010). Deficits in leisure skills may be attributed in part to deficits in cognitive functioning, communication, and social skills characteristic of individuals with significant disabilities, but they also likely come from structural constraints, such as a lack of resource, support, and opportunities (Hawkings, Peng, Hsieh, & Eklund, 1999). Consequently, when compared with their peers without disabilities, students with significant disabilities participated in significantly fewer social and recreational activities and were found to be mostly passive (Solish et al., 2010). Although researchers have examined the positive effects of learning leisure skills and effective strategies for teaching these skills (Williams & Dattilo, 1997), developing leisure skills continues to be a low priority in the education of those with significant disabilities (Van Naarden Braun, Yeargin-Allsopp, & Lollar, 2006).

Research indicates that teaching students to participate in leisure activities may have a number of positive social and emotional effects. Jerome, Frantino, and Sturmey (2007) found that as adults learn leisure skills, they increase their activity level and social interactions. Acquisition of leisure skills can also promote a range of age-appropriate recreational activities that can be enjoyed across the life span, increasing adolescents' access to their community (Hoge, Dattilo, & Williams, 1999). Teaching students with significant disabilities to participate in leisure activities can also provide an opportunity for them to form closer relationships with their peers (Carter, Asmus, & Moss, 2013). Regardless of potential benefits, most of those with significant disabilities are unlikely to learn and generalize leisure skills without systematic instruction and supports (Browder & Spooner, 2011).

Several methods for teaching leisure skills have been shown to be effective, including explicit instruction and prompting (e.g., Collins, Hall, & Branson, 1997), errorless learning and backward chaining (Jerome et ah, 2007), constant time delay (e.g., Tekin-Iftar et ah, 2001), and simultaneous prompting (Dollar, Fredrick, Alberto, & Luke, 2012). One promising intervention to teach leisure skills is video prompting, which is an evidence-based practice that has been shown to be effective in teaching those with significant disabilities a variety of skills (Banda, Dogoe, & Matuszny, 2011). There are several potential advantages to using video prompting over in vivo instruction for students with significant disabilities. The most important may be the consistency of instruction (Banda et ah, 2011), with the video being presented in the same way with each showing. This may also allow paraprofessionals, who might have less training (Fisher & Pleasants, 2012), to provide more instruction on leisure skills to their students. Thus far, video prompting has been effective in teaching a variety of skills, such as cooking skills (e.g., Mechling & Gustafson, 2009; Sigafoos et ah, 2005), self-help skills (Cihak, Alberto, Taber-Doughty, & Gama, 2006), daily living skills (e.g., Cannella-Malone et ah, 2006), and vocational skills (e.g., Van Laarhoven, Johnson, Van Laarhoven-Myers, Grider, & Grider, 2009).

Current research demonstrating the efficacy of video prompting in teaching leisure skills is limited. Edrisinha, O'Reilly, Choi, Sigafoos, and Lancioni (2011) successfully used video prompting to teach four adults with intellectual disability how to take and print a picture. Participants maintained this skill after the intervention was withdrawn, and they generalized their skills to novel situations. Chan, Lambdin, Van Laarhoven, and Johnson (2013) used video prompting to teach one man with Down syndrome three leisure skills: painting, listening to music, and taking pictures. …

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