Social Groups

Prerequisites: 

  • The child must be able to mand for (request) at least 100 items and at least 25 actions from familiar and novel adults. 
  • The child must be able to follow 1-2 step novel directions from familiar and novel adults. Example: "Throw it away and come sit down." "Clean up and wash your hands."
  • The child must be able to exhibit 3-4 play schemes with at least 5 activities. 
  • The child must be able to learn novel social/pragmatic skills in a 2:1 ratio.



Description of Social Groups: 

Confidence Connection uses basic principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to targets social skills by creating a motivating operation (reinforcing situation), reinforcing positive social behavior and modifying goals and objectives using data collection. By creating that motivating operation (otherwise known as an MO), the child begins to learns that social interaction is valuable. For children who do not respond to social reinforcement items/activities that are reinforcing, such as, candy, trains, art, etc., are paired with novel social situations. With time the novel social situation becomes reinforcing through its connection with the original reinforcer.  


At Confidence Connection children not only learn beginning social skills, but those ready to also learn how to analyze why someone is saying hello in the first place, multiple responses s/he could use, and how to choose the most appropriate response based upon the person's non-verbal cues and inference of the message. In this sense, our children learn to communicate more naturally and with more inherent understanding. Below are some of the goals and objectives targeted at Confidence Connection: 


Basic Learner Skills: 
                 
                 Eye-contact
                 Greetings
                 Initiating conversation
                 Topic maintenance
                 Turn-taking
                 Following directions
                 Structured play
                 Pretend play
                 Accepting “no”
                 Transitioning to activities
                 
Identification of Feelings:
                 Labeling emotions based upon facial expressions, tone of voice, and body  posture
                 Responding appropriately to “Why?” questions in regard to feelings they are experiencing

Coping Skills:
                 
                 Recognizing signs of stress/anxiety in themselves and others
                 Learning 5 coping skills to draw upon in times of stress
                 Learning to better regulate his/her sensory systems
                 Increasing knowledge of problem solving skills
                 
General Socialization & Communication:
                 
                 Initiating, monitoring, maintaining, and disengaging from conversations
                 Joining conversations or joining games already in progress
                 Spontaneous greetings to adults and peers
                 Using a combination of questions and comments when interacting with peers and adults
                 Cooperation, compromise, and negotiation with peers and adults
                 Describing events and Story Telling
                 Maintaining a peer's attention
                 
Non-Verbal Cues:
                 Identifying non-verbal cues based on tone of voice, facial expressions, body language, and posture
                 Recognizing emotions of both peers and adults
                 Maintaining eye contact for an appropriate length of time
                 Using and recognizing body language
                              
                              
Assessment and Goals:

Once enrolled in the program each child will be assessed to determine what goals/objectives are best suited for the child. The ABLLS: Assessment of Basic Language and Learning Skills is an assessment, curriculum guide, and skills tracking system for children with developmental, cognitive, social and/or language delays. The ABLLS contains a task analysis of the many skills necessary to communicate successfully and to learn from everyday experiences. The purpose of this assessment is to help identify those language and other critical skills that are in need of intervention in order for a child to become more capable of learning. The ABLLS scores help to determine treatment priorities, and to help with the selection of appropriate treatment objectives for an individual child.  By  the third session the student's his/her lead therapist will screen them using the social and play components of the ABLLS. Based on that screening the program supervisor will develop individualized goals for each child. 


Parent Feedback and Training: 

Once the child's goals are developed the parent will receive a copy of the goals. The lead therapist will be collecting data on each goal frequently during each session. Parents will receive periodic session notes summarizing how their child is performing and what his/her current strengths and weaknesses are. In addition, parents will receive suggestions for generalizing their child's social/pragmatic goals outside-of the program. Parents are welcome to set-up a time to observe their child in a session and to meet with their child's lead therapist.