Transitioning to Sequenced Unity
Purpose: To begin using a sequenced Unity version as quickly as possible.
The following quote is from an article by John Halloran, lead clinician in the LAMP program. John stresses the importance of teaching the meaning of single words. Many people start out with a Unity 1-Hit version because it seems to be easier. However, they soon find that the vocabulary size is too limiting. We recommend moving to sequenced Unity as quickly as possible, even as soon as after saying five or six phrases in Unity 1-Hit.
In level one Unity, when we teach autistic children words in like "eat + candy" we are possibly teaching them to create a new word "eatcandy." The danger in this happening is that the child will have a very hard time benefiting from the words they are learning as they will not match what they are hearing in their environment. The core word or pivotal word will be lost. These new words have single meanings and can be hard to change their order to generate new words. The process of combing words like "my turn," "turn on," "turn off," "your turn," etc. are food for the brain and have an ability to generalize and create what Pinker labels "mental grammar." "I want computer" can become a single word "IWANTCOMPUTER" with no understanding of the individual words "I" and "want." For this reason, we are strongly suggesting that we transition children almost immediately to a sequenced level. After one to 5 hits. It will be as easy, if not easier, to teach "eat" as "eat + verb" as "eat + chip" to equal "chip." The steps are simple. We must also remember to let the child use the core word with multiple activities as this also creates the desire for more words.
1. Go to tool box
2. Hit "erase core"
3. Hit location you want to erase (ex. apple)
4. Hit "ok"
5. Go to tool box
6. Hit "store core"
7. Store "apple + verb"
8. Spell text "eat"
You will now have your fringe words in isolation of your core word. You will now be able to not only eat a chip, play a chip, want chip, need chip, (and many other chip phrases). You will be able to easily make more chip combinations.
We strongly recommend that you teach and use vocabulary builder. You will be able to keep the motor plan 100% the same as you transition from single hit to the sequenced level. With the use of vocabulary builder, you will see the benefit of just going ahead and transitioning to full Unity.
By John Halloran, M.S.,CCC-SLP
© 2009 Prentke Romich Company