Specially-abled children are already having so much in their life to deal with and on top of that because of their special condition which creates lots of anxiety within them they, find it hard to socialize.

According to journals.plos.org, it has been found that if specially-abled students is pursuing their education from general schools rather than special needs schools, they tend to have more friends with better social skills.

As a Special Education Needs (SEN) Teacher, it’s your responsibility to notice this and try to find a way of improving social skills of specially-abled students. However, if you’re thinking about how you can help in a better way then we got cover for you. In this blog post you will get to know how you can give social skills training to your young specially-abled students, we will also discuss the use and different types of Social skills as well.

Now without waiting any further, let’s get to know everything about social skills training and how to implement it in the classroom step-by-step guide.

What is Social-Skills Training?

Social-skills training is a type of training with which SEN teachers can help Specially-abled students to learn how to socialize, have proper communication, and interact without hesitation with other people around them.

The need for learning social skills is required for every child but in the case of specially-abled children, it is more essential, because they struggle more in social skills compared to other children and because of it they may also suffer from anxiety, isolation, and depression.

By learning Social-skills, specially-abled children can improve their communication skills, they will also learn to handle their emotions properly and learn to build relationships with other students and people around them as well.

Uses of Social Skills

In general, social skills has various uses in different social situation and it’s uses got extra important in the case of specially-abled students. It gives them the ability to socialize and give them the confidence to interact with other people in a socially acceptable manner.

Social competence leads to better relationships with peers, family members, and teachers. Social skills training also helps with emotional regulation, improving self-esteem, and reducing anxiety and depression.

Different Types of social skills training that SEN Teachers Can Teach?

There are different types of social skills training that SEN teachers can teach. They are:

  • Verbal Communication Skills:

This type of social skills training is the first step to improving social skills for specially-abled students which is verbal communication skills. It focused on the development of verbal communication skills such as initiating conversations, maintaining eye contact, and active listening.

  • Non-Verbal Communication Skills:

This type of social skills training focuses on the development of non-verbal communication skills such as body language, facial expressions, and tone of voice.

  • Self-Emotions Regulation Skills:

This type of skill is one of the most important and hard to learn for specially-abled children, once it’s being learned it helps to manage their emotional state like anger, confusion, and anxiety.

  • Social Problem-Solving Skills:

Lastly, these types of skills you can teach to specially-abled students for improving social skills whose focus is to resolve socially related situations, such as to resolve conflict or negotiation skills.

How Do SEN Teachers Implement Social Skills Training?

Implementing social skills training requires a step-by-step approach to ensure that it is effective. Have a read on the steps, which are mentioned below to implement Social Skills Training Successfully:

1. Find The Root Cause

The first step is to identify the social skills that the student needs to develop. This can be done through observation, evaluation, and feedback from parents and other teachers.

As a SEN teacher, you must find out the root cause of every specially-abled student that why they are lacking social skills. You can get help for better understanding by observing, getting feedback from parents and other teachers about them, and proper evaluation.

2. Setting Clear Goals

The second step is to set clear and achievable goals for the student. The second step is to set a clear goal for improving the social skills of your specially-abled students. Goals should be tailored to the student's needs and should be specific, measurable, and time-bound.

3. Practice and Execute

The third step is the major step which is to make your students practice by executing all the learnings of social skills training. Give them a certain social situation and ask them to choose the appropriate behaviour at that time.

4. Get Feedback

The fourth and last step is to give feedback and progression reports to each and every specially-abled student who has participated in the social-skills training. You can do this by observation and based on feedback that you get from other teachers and their parents.

Challenges Faced by SEN Teachers in Social skill training and How they can overcome them

SEN teachers face several challenges when implementing social skills training. Some of the common challenges include:

As an SEN Teacher, you might face several challenges during the implementation of Social skills training. Those challenges are:

  • Hesitancy from Students: Some of the specially-abled students may feel shy or reluctant to involve in social skills training and in some cases some students may not see the importance of improving social skills. As a SEN Teacher you can overcome this by using positive reinforcement, you can incentivize participation by giving some appraisal or rewards.
  • Lack of resources: SEN teachers may face a lack of resources, such as materials and tools, when implementing social skills training. To overcome this, teachers can use online resources and collaborate with other teachers to share resources.
  • Limited time: SEN teachers may have limited time to implement social skills training, especially if they have a large class. To overcome this, teachers can prioritize the most important social skills and use a variety of teaching methods to make the most of the time available.

Give Social Skill Training To Specially-Abled Students Effectively:

As a SEN Teacher, you have the responsibility to observe and notice every small aspect of your specially-abled students. One of the common aspects, which you can notice about them, which is a lack of social skills. However, detecting this lack of social skills behaviour is not that easy for SEN Teachers, you can get good at it and other teaching aspects with Online Special Education Courses, and help your Specially-abled young learners to improve their social skills and to lead a healthy and happy life.

Written By : Abhishek