Everything you Need to Know About Dosing
When you put a video in most kids’ hands, they watch it for entertainment. Watching a cartoon settles them down or keeps them occupied – during a long drive or before dinner or bed. How is Gemiini different? Why do we call it dosing?
Watching a cartoon or TV show for entertainment is like daydreaming. Daydreaming lives in a specific region of the brain, and kids on the spectrum spend more time there. It’s both their default network and a place of overconnectivity in the brain. As one study put it:
Local functional overconnectivity in posterior brain regions is associated with symptom severity in Autism Spectrum Disorders.[i]
Gemiini’s Next-Gen Therapy changes the brain channel – from daydreamy entertainment to active engagement.
Laura Kasbar described this process – from default to active – when she spoke at Emory University:
We believe that Gemiini videos climb into a student’s default [daydreamy] network and teach them there – and then pull them into their active network where they retain,” Laura explained. “We have embedded visual and auditory anomalies into the videos that wake them up. It’s the same feeling you have while engrossed in a movie, and a bad actor enters the scene. Suddenly, you realize, ‘Hey, I’m watching a movie.’ Gemiini does that constantly with kids. We believe we are embedding this learning in their default network where they are comfortable and then pulling them into their active network where they learn.[ii]
Everybody watches TV and movies in their daydreamy network. For kids with autism, it’s their default place to be. Using videos to engage students in their default network and then switching on their active network explains the theory behind Discrete Video Modeling (DVM). Unlike entertainment, DVM uses observational learning. Language and desired behaviors are learned by watching a video and then imitating the behavior. Like with any learned skill, repeated practice and exposure allow the skill to sink in.
What About Dosing? How Many Times Should My Child Watch the Same Video?
We recommend watching the same video 42 times before choosing the next assignment.
Students are automatically assigned 42 viewings of new assignments from their level of the Language Pyramid. Forty-two repetitions allow families to integrate the therapy into their daily routines and make it easy to follow our recommended schedule of choosing a new video every week.
Every child will respond to Gemiini differently. Some students master words after fewer than 42 repetitions, and others need more. Forty-two is a starting point from which you can make adjustments. If you are uncertain how to modify dosage, our specialists can help.
How Often Should My Child Watch Gemiini?
Suggested viewing is to watch the same video six times every day for a week.
Repetition strengthens the neural pathways in the brain. Many families schedule three sessions per day and let the video repeat twice per session.
Establishing regular viewing habits allows your child to engage with Gemiini as a positive experience instead of a source of stress. Incorporating Gemiini into your daily routines will increase the likelihood of growth.
How Long Should the Sessions Last?
When sessions are shorter than 20 minutes, students achieve a higher level of engagement.
Gemiini’s Language Pyramid and QuickStart videos are shorter than 10 minutes, so watching the same video twice should never take longer than 20 minutes. Custom videos should follow this format. And, to make life easier, viewing times can be flexible. You can stream video assignments during breakfast, while driving, or during playtime.
If your child has trouble staying engaged for this long, please reach out to a Product Specialist.
How Do I Know It’s Working?
Testing is built into Gemiini assignments.
Use the testing features to measure retention. Receptive learning (comprehension) and expressive skills (speaking) should be tested separately, as they tend to develop at different rates.
Consistent low performance on receptive tests means you may need to increase the number of repetitions per video. If your child performs well on the receptive test but performs poorly in expressive language, contact our Product Specialists. Children who demonstrate much lower expressive than receptive language may need to try Gemiini’s intensive expressive speech protocol.
What if I Don’t See Any Gains?
Every child is unique.
Some students respond to Gemini after a few days, and others require several months. Your child may be picking up skills that you don’t notice right away. Even if the success you hoped for is not immediate, it’s essential not to give up.
If you have increased your child’s dosage without visible results, please schedule a call with one of our product specialists. We have many different approaches and suggestions that can help your child be successful.