AAPC author, Susan Diamond, MA, CCC, was the featured speaker at “Words Are Not Enough: Strategies for Teaching Social Skills,” a social skills workshop being held at Star Academy in San Rafael, CA. The workshop was put on by The Association of Educational Therapists, a national professional association that defines and sets standards for the professional practice of educational therapy.
“Words Are Not Enough: Strategies for Teaching Social Skills” provided professionals with easy-to-implement strategies and methods for teaching social skills to improve listening and speaking skills in children and adults with learning disabilities and other learning challenges. These strategies and methods will help attendees master the metalinguistic aspects of communication from a person’s tone of voice to his or her body language.
The presentation covered an array of information that participants can apply to their own practices. Approaches for maintaining interest from others such as visualizing, categorizing, connecting and ordering were discussed.
Methods for coping with social anxiety were also covered. Getting teased or dealing with the annoying behaviors of peers can be a particularly stressful for individuals who have trouble with social situations. Stress reduction techniques were demonstrated after an in-depth look at anxiety as it relates to social communication. Toward the end of the workshop, those in attendance got the chance to practice these techniques with a conversational partner.
After completing the workshop, participants were able to:
• List and describe approaches that help students comprehend verbal and nonverbal social cues
• Discuss how spoken language processing influences a student’s ability to understand rapidly altering topics throughout a conversation
• Demonstrate stress reduction techniques for social communication
Susan Diamond is a licensed speech-language pathologist with a private practice in Alameda, CA. She has 25 years of experience diagnosing and treating communication disorders and specializes in social language skill development. Susan is a frequent presenter at workshops and conferences and has shared her expertise as a social skills specialist with viewers of a local TV program. She is the author of the AAPC title, Social Rules for Kids, which won the gold Mom’s Choice Award of Excellence. Social Rules for Kids offers a collection of 100 rules and simple strategies that children can utilize in order to master their social abilities in many different settings such as school, home, and out in the community. Susan also developed the Diamond Social Skills DVD, a valuable training resource for parents, teachers and professionals. When Susan is not working, she enjoys reading, gardening, and doing yoga. She also loves spending time with her husband and son, whose encouragement, love, and humor keep her smiling.
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San Francisco Bay Area Workshop. (n.d.). Association of Educational Therapists. Retrieved from https://www.aetonline.org/conference/84/