A topic I keep coming across at work is motivation.  

In meetings I hear:

They aren’t interested in anything

They don’t like anything

They take a long time to answer questions

They aren’t communicating with me

They are non verbal

They just won’t do anything

While all of these are valid and are very likely how the support person feels, the reoccurring factor in all of these could be motivation.

If a student doesn’t like what is available. They are going to seem disinterested and act like they don’t like anything. 

If a student is taking a long time to respond it may be because they don’t want any of the options your are providing or are not motivated by the communicative interaction.

I’ve gone in to see “non verbal” students who communicate in some modality the minute that I find their interest.

As communication partners, it is our job to try and find what motivates our learners and immerse communication into those activities.  

Whether it’s marble towers, stuffed animals, bins of beans, climbing, or playing on a blanket, we can work language into it.  

It is important to note, this does not mean that the motivating item should be used as a reinforcement for a non motivating task. It means that the motivating item should become the activity and we follow the child’s lead and use language in their play. 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: