Human beings are sociable creatures, and we have developed many ways to communicate our messages, thoughts, and feelings to others.
Social skills are the skills we use to communicate and interact with each other, both verbally and non-verbally through gestures, body language, and our personal appearance. Social skills enable your child to interact with other children and adults, make friends, and act appropriately in different situations. Having well-developed social skills means:
- Following unwritten social rules of the environment
- Thinking about others in a shared environment
- Regulating one’s own behaviors to other people’s thoughts or expectations (Michelle Garcia Winner, 2005)
HeadStart for Life’s Social Skills Training programme aims to help your child enhance and improve their social skills, giving them the ability to interact with people around them effectively, as well as increasing their self-confidence and quality of life.
Our Social Skills Training programme is designed to help children who are experiencing difficulties in social interactions, allowing them to work at their own pace as they learn how to handle a wide array of social and life challenges.
Who needs Social Skills Training?
Children who are aged 4 years and above, who may:
- Have difficulties interacting with peers
- Demonstrates limited ability in understanding people
- Have difficulties maintaining topics
- Have issues sharing with peers
- Have difficulties in expressing their emotions
- Have difficulties initiating conversations with other people
Our Social Skills Training Approach
Our qualified therapists are trained to conduct assessments and devise intervention programmes to improve your child’s social skills. We tailor treatment plans that are specifically designed to suit your child’s needs. We incorporate various approaches that are relevant, rational, and fun.We integrate activities like role-playing, reading storybooks, and playing games throughout the intervention programme. Some of the intervention approaches we use are Social Thinking, Theory of Mind, and Social Pragmatics.
HeadStart for Life’s Social Skills Training programmes are tailored to develop the following skills, but not limited to:
- Topic maintenance
- Sharing space more effectively
- Being more aware of their behaviours as well as others’ behaviours
- Demonstrating whole body listening in a group
- Taking others’ perspectives
- Identifying listener’s feelings
- Recognising facial expressions
- Develop problem solving
Click here to learn more about our therapists.
Model Child Programme
HeadStart for Life provides a free Model Child Programme to typically developing children aged 5 to 12 years old. In this programme, a model child is invited to join one of our Social Skills Training dyad or group sessions to help the students in the group demonstrate appropriate responses during class activities.
Benefits of Being a Model Child
Based on recent studies, a typically developing child can learn from children with various difficulties in an inclusive setting. Among the immediate benefits are:
- Develop an understanding and positive attitudes towards their diverse counterparts (Odom and Bailey, 2001)
- Show increased self-esteem, confidence, autonomy, and leadership skills (Katz and Chard, 2000)
- Cooperate with other students in a diverse group to accomplish an activity
- Develop self-responsibility
- Learn to negotiate sharing
- Initiate interactions