Stay-Play-Talk with Preschoolers: Programming for Generalization and Maintenance
Milam, Molly E.
Stay-play-talk (SPT) is a peer-mediated (PM) intervention that has been found to be effective for increasing the social and communicative behaviors of young children. Generalization and maintenance outcomes associated with SPT have generally been weak or have not been measured. There is limited evidence that researchers have specifically programmed for peer buddies and/or target children to generalize and maintain skills. The current study investigated the effectiveness of SPT for children who are socially isolate with a specific focus on promoting generalization and maintenance. Using a multiple probe design, procedures were implemented to increase peer buddies’ SPT strategy use, target children’s play engagement, and target children’s initiations and responses across children and settings. All six peer buddy participants implemented the SPT strategies after training and adult use of the system-of-least prompts (SLP). In addition, the social engagement of all three target children increased following implementation of the SPT strategies by their peer buddies. Four of the six peer buddies maintained SPT strategy use, and three of the six peer buddies generalized SPT strategies to other settings. Although the generalization and maintenance of peer buddy strategy use was mixed, the play engagement of target children maintained and generalized at high levels. Teachers reported the SPT strategies were socially valid and produced socially significant increases in the social engagement of the target children.