As kids grow and start interacting with friends and family, they begin developing social skills by learning scripts for how they should behave in certain situations.
But for children with learning disabilities, this can be challenging. These activities can help strengthen their understanding of social scripts which will help to build their confidence in social situations.
Social skill building activities
- Read or tell your child stories about friendship and social interaction. Explain what made the interaction successful
- Role play social interactions your child struggles with so they get the practice they need
- Explain facial expressions and body language to your child using real-life examples that the two of you have experienced together
- Start a story involving social interaction and ask your child how they would handle the situation. Coach them if necessary.
Putting the social skills to practice
Once your child gets some practice with social scripts, it’s time to let them put their skills to the test.
Let them spend time among their friend and other peers. Sometimes the best way to learn a new skill is to be immersed in a situation and learning first hand – same goes for building social skills.
You can also get them involved in activities that introduce them to new people.
Extracurricular activities such as sports, summer camp or art classes will expose your child to new people and new situations, giving them another opportunity to learn social scripts and find new activities.
Another great way to teach these social scripts to your child is to talk with them whenever possible.
Eating dinner as a family, shopping together or just simply asking your child about their day will all provide opportunities to interact and build their social skills.