How is ESDM used in a Therapeutic Preschool Program?

In a therapeutic preschool program, children are able to receive many different services under the umbrella of one program. This structure can be extremely beneficial for children who experience developmental delays, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), or a related disorder. In a therapeutic preschool program, a child might receive ABA therapy, feeding therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and other services, to provide additional support in their development.

What is ABA therapy?
ABA therapy, in particular, will be an effective modality for children with autism or a related disorder. During these sessions, the therapist will work with children to determine the function of their behavior. By understanding the function of behavior, an ABA therapist can help to resolve problematic behavior by replacing it with a positive behavior. This approach to autism is highly effective and widely used, because there is empirical evidence that shows it is successful. Collecting data is also a significant component of ABA therapy, in order to track progress throughout the therapeutic process.

What is ESDM?
ESDM (Early Start Denver Model) is a model of early intervention that is used for children who are on the autism spectrum. ESDM incorporates the method of ABA and also uses a relationship-based approach. Since ESDM is an intensive early intervention model, this approach is typically used in very young children who are between the ages of 12 and 48 months. There is significant scientific evidence of the success of ESDM in developing cognition, language and communication skills, and social skills.

ESDM can be used in a therapeutic preschool program
ESDM can be a beneficial approach, as this model of early intervention targets pivotal developmental skills that will often be emphasized in a therapeutic preschool program. Skills targeted in ESDM, including cognition, language and communication skills, and social skills, are also crucial for advancing in school.

A therapeutic preschool program can use ESDM to improve these areas and offer the support that some children need to continue to develop and thrive. This strategy is also naturalistic and can be incorporated into play activities, making it easy to add into a therapeutic preschool program. ESDM strategies may be used by a behavior analysis professional, such as a BCBA (Board Certified Behavior Analyst), who is certified in the ESDM method. Parents of children in therapeutic preschool programs can also use ESDM strategies in the home, to provide additional practice for children.
If you are interested in learning more about ESDM, the UC Davis MIND Institute provides many resources about this model of therapy.

Our therapeutic preschool program, CST Academy, utilizes ESDM methods, so our team is extremely knowledgeable about this model. Click the purple button below or call 773-620-7800 to contact us, if you think that your child could benefit from ABA therapy in Chicago, as well as feeding therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy services.