Social Skills Development for ASD

Autism and Social Skills Development

Supporting social interaction is an important piece of the student’s educational plan. Student’s with autism often have the desire to interact with others, but do not have the skills to engage appropriately or may be overwhelmed by the process. Some students are painfully aware of their social deficits and will avoid interactions even though they desperately want to connect with others. Others will engage in attention seeking behavior to connect with others until they build the skills they need to interact. Social development represents a range of skills, including timing and attention, sensory integration and communication, that can be built and layered to improve social competence. Building competence will result in further interest and interaction.

Skoog is an accessible, tactile cube that enhances social interactions for autistic children through music and play. The device connects to an iPad and allows kids to start creating music immediately, without any lessons or prior knowledge.

While it was designed to facilitate music therapy, the gadget can also help bridge communication gaps between autistic and non-autistic people, giving autistic children a sensory-friendly experience that calms nerves and encourages interaction at the same time.

Big Mack: To increase attention to large group listening/reading activities, record a repetitive line from a story, along with a corresponding visual representation system placed on top of the Big Mack. Example: A picture of the Big Bad Wolf placed on the Big Mack switch with the repetitive line "I'll huff and I'll puff and I'll blow your house down" recorded.

Faces & Feelings Listening Lotto

Kids explore the look and tone of emotions as they match narrative statements to photographs of kids faces showing different expressions in this fun game of listening lotto.

Feelings Skills Charts

These feelings charts encourage early social skills and help children communicate their own feelings with the Feelings bulletin board set. The charts offer photographic visuals of various emotions and positive behavior solutions and is a great tool to use with children with autism and special needs.

Basic Skills Board

Children get to practice fine motor skills as well as learning vital life skills with this wooden bear skills board.

Synchrony is a drum-like device helping autistic children engage with others through music. It can be used as formal or informal music therapy, which has been proven to help autistic children broaden their social and emotional skills.

The smooth, silicon instrument helps autistic kids bridge social gaps by letting them harmonize — literally — with playmates. Synchrony responds to touch, always playing calming sounds without dissonance or "bad notes," which can sometimes be overwhelming for autistic children.

Kaspar may look a little creepy, but he's helping autistic children learn how to communicate safely and effectively. The child-like robot can talk and sing, comb his hair, and imitate eating, and the simple design of his face makes facial expressions easier to read. He also responds to touch, letting a child know if they are too rough during play.

Voice In the Box: This device can help the child to focus his attention during large grouplistening activities. These activities tend to be very difficult for children with autism. Again, countless activities can be created and incorporated into any large group listening time. Example: When the teacher is reading a book aloud to the class, numerous lines from a book can be visually represented with a corresponding recorded message on the buttons. The child can "assist" in "reading" the story by pushing the appropriate buttons for the story. Repetitive line books such as "Brown Bear" work great. The child can push the button for "Brown Bear, Brown Bear what do you see?" Another example would be the line "...but he was still hungry" from "The Very Hungry Caterpillar". Circle time activities can be programmed in a similar manner.

VOCAs as Reinforcement: Many students with autism find the VOCAs to be very reinforcing and thus provide the necessary motivation to attend to and complete other less desirable tasks/activities, if allowed to interact with the VOCA upon completion of those tasks.

Photo Social Stories Cards - About Kids in the Community

Photo Social Stories Cards - About Kids in the Community will assist those who need help understanding how to react appropriately in while out in public. The stories, photographs and questions on each card are designed to teach a variety of social skills related to public settings.

Shopping List Memory Game

In this memory game players race to be the first to fill their cart with all of the items on the shopping list as they develop social skills, observational, and memory skills.

Language Builder Emotion Cards

With 80 real photographic emotion cards, students enhance social skills as they learn to recognize and explain emotions as well as interact with their peers as they do so.

Mood Predicting Wearables

Creators of a new conversation coach for smartwatches want to help decipher nonverbal communication, like facial expressions and gestures, to help children with Asperger's navigate social interactions.

The innovation uses custom algorithms, sensors, and AI deep-learning systems to analyze a person's tone in real time, helping those on the autism spectrum decode other people's emotions during conversation. MIT researchers plan to integrate the system with smartwatches, hoping to increase accessibility for those who need it most.

Though still in early development stages, research has already found that the device can accurately read a conversation's tone up to 83 percent of the time.

Leka is an adorable interactive device that serves as a buddy for autistic children. The smart toy encourages kids to develop autonomy through independent play.

Leka plays sounds and music, lights up, vibrates, and even speaks to help engage autistic children in multi-sensory activities. The gadget is also customizable, which means it can be tailored to fit a child's specific needs and comfort.

Hidden Rules Card Deck - Social Situations

Help children learn unwritten social rules and behaviors. Hidden rules is a term that refers to unwritten social rules and behaiviors. This game teaches those rules to those that might not inatley grasp them through everyday social interactions.

Photo Conversation Cards

These photographic conversation cards for children with Autism and Asperger’s help children develop social and communication skills.

Proloquo4Text is a text-based app that instantly turns typed words into speech. The app, which was designed for nonverbal people, can be customized to display the words and phrases an individual uses often. The app also features word and sentence prediction that learns a user's communication patterns for faster responses.

Users can also choose their own voice on Proloquo4Text, giving them autonomy over not only what they say, but how they say it

Smartstones Touch is a handheld, stone-like device that remotely controls an app called :prose, allowing children to "speak" pre-programed phrases aloud with taps and swipes. Light, sound, and vibration patterns correspond with each gesture made on a Smartstone, giving autistic users tactile feedback when communicating.

The stones offer a simplified way of communication, which is perfect for nonverbal autistic children.

Feelings 12 mini posters 4" X 6"

These Feelings mini posters use pictures of actual children acting out various emotions to help with social and emotional development.

Photo Social Stories Cards

Photo Social Stories Cards will assist students who need help understanding how to react appropriately in various situations. The stories, photographs and questions on each card are designed to teach a variety of social skills.

Photo Social Stories Cards - Social Situations

These illustrated cards will help anyone learn about different social situations and the proper way to handle them.

The Social Skills Picture Book by Jed Baker

Teaching Play, Emotion, and Communication to Children with Autism

Feelings Skills Charts

These feelings charts encourage early social skills and help children communicate their own feelings with the Feelings bulletin board set. The charts offer photographic visuals of various emotions and positive behavior solutions and is a great tool to use with children with autism and special needs.

Felt Set - 12 Emotions With Labels

With this emotions felt set children will learn social skills by starting to recognize facial expressions but will also match the expression with a label.