Joint attention or shared attention is the shared focus of two individuals on an object. It is achieved when one individual alerts another to an object by means of eye-gazing, pointing or other verbal or non-verbal indications. It is one of the cornerstones of communication.
Kids develop joint attention during play with their peers and interactions with their family. This helps develop their social skills and communication skills.
Ways to work on Joint attention:
- Bubbles are a great way to get a child to interact with you! Blow bubbles and try to pop them. Use gestures and an excited voice to say “Look! Pop the bubbles!”
- Balloon play is another great way to engage. The balloon moves slowly through the air allowing the child to have time to organize their body to try and bat the balloon up into the air.
- Light up toys or ‘cause and effect’ toys are a great way to share attention. We have some great toys to work on joint attention.
- Whacky ball
- Light-up DNA ball
- Marble run
- Light-up suction ball