Summer Play Date Success!
Summer.. oh where does the time go? All year we look forward to all the time we are going to have off and before you know it – summer is ½ or ¾ over! Well it is not over yet.. so you still have time to work on your child’s social skills. Yes… that means planning a play date. Depending on your kid’s age this might now mean, “hanging out with a friend.”
Most kids on the Autism Spectrum are not begging their parents to have friends over like some of their nuero typical peers. Not because they don’t want to have friends, it is just that it is sometimes SO HARD! All that non-structured playtime can be really challenging for our kids. So this summer.. help your kids out.. by providing a little structure. Give clear options (pre determined by you and your child on acceptable choices) on what to do during the play date.
Depending on the age of your child and friend you can work on specific social scenarios by using the Social Skill Builder My Community or Preschool Playtime software. Have them go through all the questions on the “Going to the Movies” section of My Community – then actually take that friend to the movie. It will allow you child to not only prepare and practice skills before he goes into a certain environment, but also the take those skills learned into the natural environment with a peer who has had the same training.
For preschoolers, you may want them to view and answer questions about the park scenarios in the Preschool Playtime software. You can then go to the actual park and try out these skills in real life. It is a wonderful way to carry over and generalize skills learned!
Make it fun! Laugh at the silly situations that might happen during their preparation time. You can even act those out and discuss what went wrong. By doing this you are preparing your child to become more of an expert for each situation he may encounter!