Child in yellow raincoat with backpack walking through grass field.

IEP goals are an important part of your child’s development when it comes to subjects like math and science. But your child’s success and well-being is dependent on several things that stretch beyond just academics.

That’s why IEP goals for social skills are so important! Nurturing these skills can have a marked impact on the well-rounded development of your child. Learn more about activities that can help to improve your child’s social skills. These suggestions can be particularly useful for kids with autism but are broad enough to be used with all students!

Utilize Body Language & Gestures

Understanding the natural power of body language and gestures is an important part of communication skills. While they may be non-verbal, gestures are an important part of being understood by other children and classmates. For example, children should understand what it means to nod their head or make eye contact to signal that they are listening to a fellow student. Group projects or planning a welcome party can be great ways to engage these skills.

Identifying Their Feelings

An important part of socialization for a child is being able to identify and manage their emotions. For this reason, one of the best objectives for social skills is having them identify 3 emotions they’ve experienced. Over a course of a couple months, have them identify emotions like sadness, happiness, or anger. They will be able to understand their actions and their responses by pinpointing these emotions throughout their school day.

Participate in Roleplaying  

Few activities come more naturally to children than roleplaying. After all, they play games like house and doctor from the time they are toddlers! Fortunately, these games can be perfect for IEP goals for social emotional skills and can build self-confidence. Roleplaying can be anything from pretending to run a bakery to practicing to ask a question in class. This strategy can help children learn to maintain a conversation, demonstrate awareness of personal space, and manage conflict.

Play a Board Game

Board games may be something that you do with your children on the weekend anyways. But they can also be a great tool for teaching them some necessary skills! During board game play, kids will learn to take turns, learn the rules of the game, and manage their feelings when they lose. Games like Monopoly Junior and Sorry are ideal for enabling them to utilize and develop these types of skills.   

Take a Field Trip

A field trip once a month can be a meaningful way to engage a child’s social skills in an unfamiliar environment. Taking kids to the library and having them read out loud with other children can be beneficial. Likewise, a visit to a museum can be an opportunity for them to share something they’ve learned. These types of trips will allow them to learn new things and communicate it to their classmates. It will also make for a refreshing change from everyday interactions that help with social skills IEP goals!

Conclusion

When it comes to education, goals are an important part of your child getting the most out of learning. However, IEP goals for social skills play a role in how well they will do beyond academics. Fortunately, whether it’s roleplaying situations that occur during recess or understanding their feelings, incorporating these goals is easy! If your child is working on their communication skills, you may want to try our Chat Chains social skills game designed for kids, teens, and adults!

References

Study.com. Sample Social Skills IEP Goals. https://study.com/academy/lesson/sample-social-skills-iep-goals.html

Number Dyslexia. IEP Goals for Social Skills. https://numberdyslexia.com/iep-goals-for-social-skills/

A Day In Our Shoes. 37 Measurable Social Skills IEP Goal. https://adayinourshoes.com/social-skills-iep-goals/

Positive Action. 100+ Social-Emotional Skills IEP Goals [The Complete List]. https://www.positiveaction.net/blog/social-emotional-skills-iep-goals

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Justine Leonhardt

Justine Leonhardt

Justine Leonhardt is a freelance writer based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She has a background in creative writing and is passionate about the written word and all of the possibilities that come along with it. She loves learning and writing about philosophy, art, the environment, social issues and well-being.

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