Social skills are the skills we use everyday to interact and communicate with others. They include verbal and non-verbal communication, such as speech, gesture, facial expression and body language. A person has strong social skills if they are able to respond in various social situations and understand both written and implied rules when communicating with others. Social skills are crucial to making and sustaining friendships, succeeding in school, and later, maintaining a job.
What are social skills groups?
Social skills groups are small groups (typically 2-8 children) led by a group facilitator who captures and contrives opportunities to teach children skills needed to interact appropriately with their same-age peers. Social skills groups can help children learn conversational, friendship, and problem-solving skills. Social skill groups can also be useful in teaching children to regulate their emotions and understand the perspective of others.
How do social skills groups work?
Maybe the children in the group have trouble starting a conversation or keeping one going? Or perhaps they have difficulty understanding body language? The group facilitator will lead the children through exercises to learn the skills needed to succeed in any social challenge that they are facing. Most of the group meetings include opportunities for children to engage with other same-age peers to role-play or practice the appropriate social skills and to get feedback on how they’re doing.
What are the benefits of social skills groups?
Children are given the opportunity to learn valuable skills needed to interact with others and build lasting relationships. This includes skills such as learning how to greet others, start a conversation, respond to others, maintain a conversation, share and take turns, play with others, and ask for help.