What is LEGO®-Based Therapy?
Lego Based Therapy was developed as a social development intervention for children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other social communication impairments (Le Goff et al., 2014; ).
The ability for children to interact more effortlessly with peers.by using LEGO® was an accidental discovery in the waiting room of one of Le Goff's waiting rooms. He noticed that his clients would use the LEGO® in the waiting area and engaged with each other more than he saw in group sessions or in other environments.
LEGO®-Based Therapy uses the love of LEGO®-to develop social confidence, social skills and a child’s engagement in group and individual sessions.
Children and teens gravitate towards LEGO® for many reasons, it is a system that makes sense to them, it is predictable and familiar to them, it provides safety to retreat to if surrounding stimulus becomes overwhelming and it is a tool to share ideas and stories.
We are often asked, “We’ve tried LEGO®-Based Therapy before, is the Play Educate model the same?”
Le Goff and Baron Cohen’s LEGO®-Based Therapy is a very structured program. Grouping children aged 5-16 years with similar diagnoses including ASD, ADHD, social communication difficulties, anxiety, social withdraw, depression and other mental health challenges. The model developed a Cambridge University has three roles and the children each rotate through the roles
There is also a program developed by LEGO® for problem solving and conflict resolution, personal awareness and growth.
At Play Educate , Director and program writer, Elisha, uses the evidence based practices from the Cambridge University program training she completed, and also her qualifications in Lego Serious Play to create a more organic flow to peer integration or an individuals ability to use the LEGO® as a medium for therapeutic exploration and communication in one on one settings. Elisha has used Lego in group therapy since 2011 as it is a medium that most children and adults really connect with.
My child finds it difficult to make friends, will Lego Group be a good fit for them?
We hope so! At intake we aim to gain as much information to place your child in the best fit group. Groups are a passion of the Play Educate team, it’s rewarding to see children, supported in practicing social skills with peers in a likeminded activity, gain confidence and build friendships in their LEGO® group.
It is possible to book “recess” or “lunchtime” groups at your child's school to assist in friendship skill building, for transitioning to a new school, to ease school refusal if there is fear around feeling lonely at break times.
You can discuss this option with intake.
Is my child ready for a Lego group?
You know your child best! We are happy to chat about this with you and find out the goals for your child and if Lego group is a good fit.
The main two rules of Lego club are for everyone to feel safe and everyone to have fun.
We “get” and embrace neurodiversity. We know that all children will need and will gain different things from a group. And although there are some skills that are super great if your child has them prior to attending; skills that will make their learning easier in the group, like able to listen to or follow visually a two step instruction, feeling comfortable to ask a facilitator for help if needed, be able to separate comfortably from caregiver at drop off, not snatch or destroy other’s creations… these are all ideals, and sometimes part of the end goal.
With Safety and positive experiences at the forefront of our delivery goal, we will always work with ways to support your child if they’re not quite ready for a group. Individual Lego therapy can always be a stepping stone.
What are the benefits of Lego Based Therapy and Lego Groups?
The Play Educate Lego Based therapy have recorded benefits in
- impovements in fixated behaviours
- decrease in fixed thinking
- increase in confidence
- increase in confidence with peers
- increase in confidence asking for help
- decrease in perfectionism thinking
- increased ability to self sooth
- increased ability to play safely with peers
- increased ability to transition in tasks
- increased problem solving
- ability to control outbursts
- ability to communicate needs and wants