Helping kids to learn social skills is the main mission for us here at The Social Express. We’re always on the lookout for help with Asperger’s and autism that we can share with you. Here’s a great example.
Dave Angel wrote a valuable article over on his blog, Parenting Aspergers. It’s about learning social skills and making friendships for children with Asperger’s.
According to Dave’s article, Asperger’s and Friendships (4 Great Tips), children with Asperger’s have difficulty understanding all of the non-verbal things that are going on in a conversation with other children. These non-verbal things include eye contact, tone of voice, body language and others.
Dave interviewed Dr. Lani Ravinovich, a Licensed Psychologist that has worked with many children with Aspergers. Among many other qualifications, she is trained in the PEERS Program (an evidence-based social skills program for adolescents with Asperger’s or High-Functioning Autism).
To Help with Asperger’s, Repetition is Important
Dave’s article has four great recommendations. Here are our two favorite tips from his list, and examples of how we’ve used them.
Break down social skills teaching into small topics and then reinforce them with your child. Repeat the lessons over and over.
This is one of the main reasons our social learning software, The Social Express, includes several places in the program for you to pause it. Then you can discuss with your child the best action to take. For example, you can ask your child: what’s the best action you can take when you want to be a part of the group?
– We like to reinforce the social skill, “keep your body facing the group”. A good way to work on this one is to show your child pictures of children in books. Ask him or her to tell you which of the children in the pictures are facing the group, and which are not.
Consistently work on social skills with your child. Repeat the social skills lessons often.
– We always try to do this with our twins. When handing one of them a cookie, we point to our eyes to remind them to make eye contact. We hold onto to the cookie until they look us in the eye. This is a simple exercise, but one that’s helped our boys to learn to make eye contact.
Thanks to Dave Angel for writing such helpful and easy to read tips. I recommend that if you’re looking for help with Aspergers, definitely read the full blog article. You can find it by clicking here.