Friendships and learning difference - what's one simple thing you can do to help your child?
As an Occupational Therapist, I did observe social skills with various kids so it's not that I didn't assess this area but to say it was my area of expertise...well maybe not as much. But when you blend my training as an OT with my experience as a Mom of three, I think I have some good advice to offer other Moms that are looking for some way to help their child develop friendships in a way that will not seem toooooo difficult.
From my mom experience, the best way to work on helping your child develop relationships and to help monitor how they are doing socially is to invite others over to your house.
Yup that's it. Not earth shattering ...but effective my friend! It allows you to see what's happening in their social world.
It doesn't have to be a long time...just an hour...to play and interact and then the new friend can go home.
I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves as parents to do big things with our kids but the small steps of having someone over for just an hour or so can make a big difference.
You may already do this (in fact I'm sure you do) but are you using this time to support your child and figure out what they need??? If you do....awesome! You got this...keep going.
If not, no worries now you are ready.
- Talk to your child in advance to prepare them for the visit.
- Review what they will be doing with their friend and how you can even be a part of their time together.
- If your child doesn't want their special toys touched then put them away so this doesn't end up in a conflict situation right away.
Social skills take time just like any other skills - and having another child over will allow you to watch and see how your child is responding with different social situations.
This is your time to observe and walk through some social situations as you support you child.
You've got this.
Watch the video for more detailed steps: