Many children with autism struggle with making friends due to difficulty communicating or suffering from social anxiety, which is very common for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Social skills for teens can help them make friends and form healthy relationships, including dating when they are old enough. Social skills groups are a necessary and beneficial therapy technique for teens living with autism and can significantly improve their chances of leading a more independent life.
At Camp Worth, we employ a variety of evidence-backed behavioral and holistic therapies to give teens aged eleven to seventeen the skills they need to interact with their peers in a variety of social situations. Our social skills activities for teens give them a safe space to practice greetings, knowing when hugging is appropriate, and other social skills to help them fit in with their peers. If your teen with autism needs help with their social and other life skills, contact Camp Worth online or call 855.915.2545 today to speak with our friendly staff about our social skills groups for teens.
Social Skills for Improved Relationships
Children with autism crave social interaction just like the rest of us. Due to their difficulty understanding their thoughts and emotions, it can be challenging for them to make new friends and interact with others. They can often come across as anti-social or show inappropriate behavior when they begin to feel overwhelmed or afraid to feel vulnerable around others.
Some of the social skills teens will need to form healthy, long-lasting relationships include:
- Understanding facial expressions and non-verbal communication skills
- Adjusting to new social situations and unfamiliar settings
- Knowing how to respond to different social situations where they disagree with what someone is doing or saying
- Sharing and learning interests with friends
Social Skills Activities for Teens
It can be very easy for teens to become frustrated when trying to express themselves if they are not understood or feel they are excluded from the conversation. This can lead to unwanted behavior and make socializing more difficult if they do not have the proper social skills.
A few social skills activities for teens that can improve their social interactions include:
- Social stories – This activity helps teens with autism prepare for social events and other activities. It uses a visual description of the activity they are going to so they know what to say and what behavior is appropriate.
- Reading facial expressions – Using colorful visual aids with different facial expressions to practice understanding the expressions and what they mean will make socializing more enjoyable with less frustration. Getting them involved with making the visual aids will help them understand the expressions faster.
- Conversation starters – Teens with autism often don’t know how to start a conversation with people. You can create short conversion starter cards for greetings, asking about their day, and other things they can say to practice how to start a conversation.
- Interactive games – You can create a fun interactive game where you write down different expressions and act them out. This can be a fun game to play alone to prepare for social events or a group game with their peers.
Rely On Camp Worth for Support with Social Skills for Teens
At Camp Worth, we help teens who are frustrated over their lack of healthy friendships and social skills. We know how valuable relationships can be for your teen’s development and will work with them to develop their skills to form new relationships and lead a more fulfilling life. We employ various therapies to develop the skills your teen needs, such as:
- Individual therapy program
- Family counseling program
- Medication management
- Social skills groups
- Functional skills training program
If you’re interested in learning more about how our Camp Worth team teaches social skills to teens, reach out to our team today by calling 855.915.2545 or completing our online contact form.