For people with social skills challenges it is not enough just to teach how to recognize different facial expression or how to greet someone, it is equally important to teach when and where to apply non-verbal language skills. Social skills make it possible to form relationships in order to feed our need for social interactions and connections. These skills will be used to cultivate friends, acquire and maintain a job, as well as negotiate the demands of school.
Social skills are directly taught in the early years by parents and schools, but past kindergarten in most public schools work on social skills ends. A lack of social skills is present when we hear of teens going into a school and shooting everyone. They can think of no other solution. Certainly, lack of social skills is not the only missing skill and the break down in the interaction is not just a result of one person’s poor social skills but also speaks to a society that does not teach their students tolerance and acceptance of differences. This intolerance results in social isolation.
We all continue to hone our social skills throughout life using observation, discussion, and imitation. Hanging out with friends, is an important teaching tool for teens acquiring social skills. some skills acquired include flirting, group acceptance, and verbal negotiations of disagreements. Social skills are learned throughout our lives through all our social interactions.
However, for people with social skills deficits the ability to perceive underlying non-verbal communication in a social situation often does not happen. One reason is the lack of social opportunities. These kids have difficulty making friends. Next because of their inability to perceive non-verbal language cues, they often do not even see the communication exchanges. However, with direct group and individual training, that includes work in the community, progress is possible.
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