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triad of impairments - imagination - new info

(51 Posts)
ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 13:33:55

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phoebus Mon 22-Oct-12 14:02:29

Thanks Leonie, that IS a useful clarification. That hasn't been made at all clear in the past, has it ....? - my DS does have a good imagination in many ways; yet I'd agree that he isn't great at predicting the outcomes of SOCIAL interactions. 'Imagination' is a wide-ranging skill/concept, and I think they should have been a lot more specific about exactly what they meant by that with regard to the triad of impairments. Lots of kids with ASD actually have incredible imaginations, though most probably in 'non-social/RL' ways....

bochead Mon 22-Oct-12 14:05:53

& a wee light bulb goes off in my head wink

DS only started role play type play of any description at 7.5 which I noticed and this links to his rule based approach to social skills really well for me. He has friends etc, but unless you know him, you'd have no idea of the binary computing type thought process his mind goes through to maintain these friendships. His new TA & teacher have both found it very intriguing to get their heads round this year as it can look so normal till he makes the odd comment that totally gives himself away.

FangsForBloodyNothing Mon 22-Oct-12 14:09:15

Actually Leonie I have always thought it odd that my ds has a great imagination. I didnt realise it was more about social imagination.The example you gave on the other thread about the girl looking fat was a good example for me.Thanks for sharing thissmile.

ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 14:10:31

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ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 14:11:40

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SallyBear Mon 22-Oct-12 14:13:24

Thank you Leonie. I have always struggled with the imagination thing, as DS1's imagination is huge and his story telling is amazing yet he cannot predict how something in RL might end.

mummytime Mon 22-Oct-12 14:25:15

Thanks Leonie, I will try this on my DD after school. She has great imagination (can use random stuff to represent other things), but I'm not sure she can predict the social consequences, it will be interesting.

swanthingafteranother Mon 22-Oct-12 14:33:26

I had a very good example of this at family therapist with Ds2. FT asked ds what he thought of his brother, and ds2 came up with very imaginative (I thought) example of two bricks one red one green, and then put the bricks together to say his older brother was a bit red and bit green in his behaviour, sometimes nice sometimes nasty.
We then asked him some questions about other things, and he used the brick description again shock. It was almost as if, having thought up an original and imaginative solution to the problem it was worth using it again and again, no point thinking of a new theory. Very fixed.

Both my sons will write quite long fantasy stories, but struggle to make them convincing accounts of RL emotions and actions. I see that soaps like Downton are actually very useful to them because it is a quite simple explanation of why people react in certain ways in certain situations. Ds2 dislikes drama on telly, much prefers factual programmes or funny fantasy programmes. Even Harry Potter is too realistic for him, in terms of people's preoccupations and motivation, whereas Star Wars and LoRings is very exciting and interesting to him, as it is not so pyschological. I think he is going to find "drama" (like Tracy Beaker, say) interesting in the end, but it is almost like a delayed developmental stage, he is more interested in the ideas than the people ifysim.

swanthingafteranother Mon 22-Oct-12 14:39:04

Ds2 is very literal, yet he derives immense pleasure from "funny things". So the jokes in Horrible Histories are reenacted again and again for us, and he loves all the jokes in Percy Jackson books. So it is an imaginative world of a sort; I suppose he delights in the oddness of others, at at home with people who are a bit less NT...

AlwaysInWonder Mon 22-Oct-12 14:39:49

This is really interresting.
Because ds2 seems to have a lot of imagination and can play with ds1 quite a lot. Except it's always a copy of what ds1 does or based on a cartoon/film he has seen.

He is just starting to get some cartoons like Tom&Jerry but even then he has actually started to ask ds1 why things have happen.

I have discovered this blog and I though it is giving a nice explanation about imagination too.

AlwaysInWonder Mon 22-Oct-12 14:42:38

Describing people emotions.... ds2 had to do that for a 'big write'. He never went further than the 2 emotions the teacher had talked about....

bialystockandbloom Mon 22-Oct-12 14:53:49

To be fair (and pedantic wink) the diagnostic classification of impairment in social imagination has always been there. But good that the NAS have clarified this, as there has been confusion about this (witness the number of people here saying "but my dc has great imagination"!).

I think it's often the case, though, that the absence/impairment of social imagination is very subtle and hard to see, especially in young children 2/3/4yo. Which is why diagnostic tools (and advice given generally about the triad) for young children tends to ask questions about imaginative or pretend play. In a 2yo that kind of imaginative play is an early indication that social imagination, and ability to anticipate and sequence, will follow later.

Phoebus i totally agree, I think dc with asd often have amazing imaginations - but the ability to distinguish between reality and non-reality (eg tv programmes) can make things even more confusing for them.

ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 15:02:39

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ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 15:02:46

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ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 15:03:31

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bialystockandbloom Mon 22-Oct-12 15:12:42

Yep Leonie we had that too, with hulk, spiderman, etc. Ds flipped out when he saw the Scooby Doo film (non-cartoon version), I realised it was because he couldn't compute that the characters looked different (ie real instead of cartoon) so wouldn't accept they were the same characters.

Though actually that might be a problem with generalising.. which is probably related to social imagination somewhere too... hmm.

Ineedalife Mon 22-Oct-12 17:24:13

Interesting stuff leonie, Dd3 definitely cant predict the outcomes of social interactions. She says what she wants to say, doesnt listen to the other person and thats it, interaction overgrin

She also struggles with understanding how real people are on TV, She gets very involved with certain series and seems to think that it is actually happening.

troutpout Mon 22-Oct-12 18:35:38

That explains it perfectly doesn't it.
So many of us have said in the past " but he/she has a good imagination!"
This definition is perfect

ArthurPewty Mon 22-Oct-12 18:51:42

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ilikemysleep Mon 22-Oct-12 20:40:41

Sorry, I commented on another thread but it might bear repetition. Us in the diagnostic field tend to use 'unusual in scope, intensity or duration' as our definition of imagination ( we also refer to 'flexible thinking' in this part of the triad). This 'unusual' definition includes the odd, the too much as well as the too little. We recently diagnosed a 12 year old who 'tells lies' all the time, pointlessly. Things like saying hid dad is in the circus or he has been to America. It isn't done 'for attention' and we were all confused, but we have concluded he simply doesn't understand the difference between 'fantasy' and 'truth'. We also concluded it's a fundamental misunderstanding of communication; he hasn't grasped that one of the fundamentals of a non-jokey conversation is that the information you exchange is basically correct and truthful.

I have also noticed that the 'pda' type kids tend to be on the 'too much' end of the imagination spectrum....but massive flexible thinking difficulties...

AlwaysInWonder Mon 22-Oct-12 21:00:44

What do you call the pda type kids?

HotheadPaisan Mon 22-Oct-12 21:15:22

We had no idea everything was pointing towards autism for DS1, we thought his language and play were absolutely fine for example, it was sensory issues and interactions that were big problems. Then at a diagnosis meeting the paediatrician asked lots of questions about his play and it suddenly dawned on me that DS1 always played the same game, always, for hours. It looked imaginative to me but was copied from just two TV progs. He didn't colour, he didn't do jigsaws or any other kind of play. Agree, his complete inability to predict or see consequences is a big issue.

He's very PDA-like, can spin a story for hours, and hours, and hours.

TheCreepingLurgy Mon 22-Oct-12 21:26:58

Interesting, Ilikemysleep. I always took the imagination leg of the triad to refer to the restricted interests and repetitive behaviours, and lack of cognitive flexibility, which could also be explained by the "unusual in scope, intensity or duration" you mention.

I find it slightly odd that Judith Gould now explains imagination to refer to social imagination, because how would this explain the repetitive behaviours and restricted interests?

HotheadPaisan Mon 22-Oct-12 21:29:29

Another characteristic? Not essential to a diagnosis but points in that direction when seen with the three social difficulties?

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