B4-A: Declarative Language: Increase Competence and Connection by Making Small Changes in Your Speaking Style

Declarative statements have broad applicability in language and relationships. Whether one is a caregiver, therapist, or teacher, incorporating declarative language into communication can enhance competence and executive functioning skills, decrease problem behaviors, foster connection, and improve language. Often, individuals rely on imperative statements that elicit either a correct or incorrect response and do not promote further skill development. For instance, an imperative statement like, “Get in line” misses the important opportunity to teach reading contextual cues, a deficit in autism. Shifting to declarative language, such as, “I notice it’s time for lunch” empowers individuals to observe their environment, make decisions for themselves and gain independence.

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify the characteristics of declarative language and differentiate it from imperative language.
  2. Describe examples of using declarative statements in everyday language.
  3. 3.Develop a plan of action to begin utilizing declarative statements in your language.
Behavior Communication Early Childhood Family


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