Social skills may seem like an easy goal. Parents often say, “I just want him to play with his friends”, or “I want him to make friends”. Recently I had someone say to me “he has friends at school so he doesn’t really need social skills”. Having ‘friends’ and having the skills to appropriately interact with these friends, and navigate social situations are two different things.
This month we welcome a new member to the AES family. Elanore has joined the team as Social Clubs Team Leader. With over 10 years’ experience dedicated to working with children from babies through to teenagers, Elanore has a Bachelor of Psychology and is also a qualified primary school teacher.
Catch up on all the fun learning for our social club members in term 4.
In last month’s article Irina explained the importance of functional communication. Once a child learns the fundamental elements of communication, we are then in a central position to start teaching them more complex communications such as requesting for help and conversations.
As children enter the school-age years developing meaningful relationships, especially with peers becomes more important. Development milestones for this age group include developing a willingness to play cooperatively, take turns, and share as well as understanding their own feelings, developing self-regulation skills and development of more complex conversational skills. Children with autism often require additional support to acquire and improve these skills and our social clubs provide a safe and engaging environment for this to occur.