16 Sep 2019

BY: admin

Psychology Team

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High school transitions don’t have to be stressful!

For many children the transition into high school comes with a great dollop of trepidation and excitement. While high school means learning about a new school, it brings with it opportunities such as access to specialist subjects and a wider social circle to join.

Some children though find the prospect of a new school, new faces and new routines overwhelming. If this is your child, then the end of Term Three and the start of Term Four are good times to start planning out your child’s transition for the year to come.

Some general strategies to prepare for transitioning to high school 

A good place to start is by talking about what to expect and framing discussions in a positive light. Any older siblings who want to terrorise younger siblings with horror stories need to be reminded that they are not being helpful!

Emphasise the good stuff – like opportunities to make new friends and the opportunity to join in with clubs and sports.

Talk through the information that comes home from school and organise the preparation. Uniforms and book lists need to be sorted and these can be an exciting time and help reassure children that they are on track for high school.

Fortunately, most secondary school these days will have orientation sessions where the children spend time at their new school. This is a great time to answer basic questions like – where is my class, where are the toilets, who will be my teachers?

For the children who will need a little more support with transition

Parents can schedule time to talk to this year’s class teachers about how to prepare their children. Some children need more than the once off visit to school. Their transition may involve making sure that the new school has information about their needs and has an identified person at high school to provide extra support during transition.

A transition program may also involve additional excursions to the new school to help the child become more familiar with the new environment.

This is a good time to remind children about their skills to manage big feelings…self-regulation…and when to use these.

It can also be a good time to brush up on social skills so that children are ready to take advantage of the new social opportunities.

What if you still need help with transition?

Our staff at the Centre are available to help with transition planning and skills development (think self-regulation and social skills). They can also work with schools to help make sure that the transition goes as smoothly as possible.

For more information about our services please call Reception on 9274 7062 or our website information on psychology services:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/psychological-services/

05 Sep 2019

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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Group Social Skills Programs for Term Four

Registration for Term Four group social skills programs are now open! Each term the Centre runs small  group social skills programs for children between 4 and 11 years of age. Our team work hard to make these sessions fun and motivating, while teaching the important skills needed to make and keep friends.

In each group the team employs a four-part training approach using modelling, role-playing, performance feedback, and generalisation to teach essential pro-social skills to children.  Programs are tailored to meet the needs of the children participating in groups.

All groups are run by two facilitators from our ABACAS team – currently Simone Healy and Toni Schmitz (Provisional Psychologists). Groups are run after school hours and on Saturday mornings and are open to any child needing help with developing their friendship skills.

For our last round of group social skills programs for the year, the team will be running four groups each week  in Term Four.   The program timetable is below:

Social Skill Group Suitable ages Day of the week
Best Buddies 6 – 8 year olds Wednesday and Thursday (note children only attend one session)
Fantastic Friends 8 – 11 years olds Friday
Secret Agent Society (SAS) 10 & 11 year olds Saturday

Please look at our our social skills program page for more information about the various groups programs.

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

For more information about the Secret Agent Society program, please have a look at the following website:

https://www.sst-institute.net/

To register your interest in the program please contact Reception on 9274 7062.

Social Skills Program 01 Jul 2019

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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Fantastic Friends – Social Skills Program for 8 to 11 year olds in Term Three

In Term Three, our group social skills programs start up again. Social skills are what we need to be able to make and keep friends. For children the emphasis is developing play and conversational skills with peers.

Fantastic Friends sessions will be run by two facilitators  (Simone, Toni or Ruby). The program aims to build and develop more complex social skills. For this age group, we will focus on a range of skills including starting and maintaining a conversation, introducing self and other people, asking questions, and apologizing. At the beginning of each term, the specific skills being taught will be customised to the group needs.

Who is suited: Children aged 8-11 years of age who need help with making or keeping friends.

Where: Child Wellbeing Centre at our Tuohy Lane offices, Midland.

When: Friday afternoons during school Term Three, 4-5.30 pm

How much: $87.80 per session

How to get involved: Contact our Reception on 9274 7062 to book an initial appointment with Simone or Toni.

At the initial appointment we will talk to you about your child’s needs so we can work out whether the group program is what they need.

For more information about our other social skills programs, please follow the link:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

Social Skills Programs 01 Jul 2019

BY: admin

Uncategorized

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Best Buddies – Social Skills Program for 6-8 year olds in Term Three

In Term Three, our group social skills programs start up again. Social skills are what we need to be able to make and keep friends. For children the emphasis is developing play and conversational skills with peers.

We will be running two “Best Buddies” groups to help to build your child’s confidence. Groups will be using modelling and role playing to practice new skills and refine existing skills.

Who is suited: Children aged 6 to 8 years of age who need help with making or keeping friends.

Where: Child Wellbeing Centre at our Tuohy Lane offices, Midland.

When:  Group A – Wednesday afternoons from 4pm to 5.30pm & Group B – Thursday afternoons during school Term Three, 4.00-5.30 pm

How much: $87.80 per session

How to get involved: Contact our Reception on 9274 7062 to book an initial appointment with Simone or Toni.

Best Buddies sessions will be run by two facilitators  (either Simone, Toni or Ruby). The skills being taught in each term will be determined by the needs of the children in the group. However, we will be looking at a range of skills including introducing yourself, conversation skills, play skills, helping a friend, sharing, and turn-taking.

At the initial appointment we will talking to you about your child’s needs so we can work out whether the group program is what they need.

For more information about our other social skills programs, please follow the link:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

Social Skills Program 13 Mar 2019

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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Fantastic Friends – Social Skills Programs for 8-11 year olds

In Term Two, our group social skills programs start up again. Social skills are what we need to be able to make and keep friends. For children the emphasis is developing play and conversational skills with peers.

Fantastic Friends sessions will be run by two facilitators  (Simone and Toni). The program aims to build and develop more complex social skills. For this age group, we will focus on a range of skills including starting and maintaining a conversation, introducing self and other people, asking questions, and apologizing. At the beginning of each term, the specific skills being taught will be customised to the group needs.

Who is suited: Children aged 8-11 years of age who need help with making or keeping friends.

Where: Child Wellbeing Centre at our Tuohy Lane offices, Midland.

When: Friday afternoons during school Term Two, 4-5.30 pm

How much: $87.80 per session

How to get involved: Contact our Reception on 9274 7062 to book an initial appointment with Simone or Toni.

At the initial appointment we will talk to you about your child’s needs so we can work out whether the group program is what they need.

For more information about our other social skills programs, please follow the link:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

Social Skills Programs 13 Mar 2019

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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Best Buddies – Social Skills Programs for 6-8 year olds

In Term Two, our group social skills programs start up again. Social skills are what we need to be able to make and keep friends. For children the emphasis is developing play and conversational skills with peers.

Our “Best Buddies” program will help to build your child’s confidence. We will be using modelling, and role playing to practice new skills and refine existing skills.

Who is suited: Children aged 6 to 8 years of age who need help with making or keeping friends.

Where: Child Wellbeing Centre at our Tuohy Lane offices, Midland.

When: Thursday afternoons during school Term Two, 4.00-5.30 pm

How much: $87.80 per session

How to get involved: Contact our Reception on 9274 7062 to book an initial appointment with Simone or Toni.

Best Buddies sessions will be run by two facilitators  (Simone and Toni). The skills being taught in each term will be determined by the needs of the children in the group. However, we will be looking at a range of skills including introducing yourself, conversation skills, play skills, helping a friend, sharing, and turn-taking.

At the initial appointment we will talking to you about your child’s needs so we can work out whether the group program is what they need.

For more information about our other social skills programs, please follow the link:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

11 Mar 2019

BY: admin

ABACAS Team / Psychology Team

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Amazing Amigos – Social Skills Program for 4 to 6 year olds

In Term Two, our group social skills programs start up again. Social skills are what we need to be able to make and keep friends. For young children the emphasis is on learning how to play co-cooperatively with other children.

Our “Amazing Amigos” groups is a social skills group targeted at Kindergarten & Pre-Primary students. Children in these groups don’t need to have a diagnosis to benefit. We will teach social skills using modelling, role playing and hands on skills practice. Children will be able to try new skills and polish existing social skills amongst peers and supportive adults. The program is 10 weeks and fits in with school the school term. Sessions are run after school on a Wednesday afternoon from 4.00pm.

The specific skills taught each term will be determined by group needs. In general, we will be looking to teach or refine skills such as: asking for help; sharing; greeting others; turn taking and protective behaviours.

Where: Child Wellbeing Centre at our Tuohy Lane offices, Midland.

When: Wednesday afternoons 4.00pm – 5.00pm during the school term

Who is suited: Children aged between 4 and 6 years old who need help with their social skills. Diagnoses are not essential.

How much: $58.53 per session, to be paid each week of attendance.

How to get involved: Contact our Reception on 9274 7062 to book an initial appointment with Simone or Toni.

At the initial appointment we will talking to you about your child’s needs so we can work out whether the group program is what they need.

For more information about our other social skills programs, please follow the link:

https://www.childwellbeingcentre.net.au/services/social-skills-programs/

13 Sep 2018

BY: admin

Psychology Team

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Difficulties Making Friends?- Five Tips for Primary School Children

Nothing is more heart breaking as a parent to hear that your child isn’t making friends. We all want the best for our children. The reality is that for some children (particularly the more shy and reserved variety) making new friends can be hard. Not only do children need some confidence to walk up to others but they also need an array of social skills to draw on.

5 Tips for Making Friends

Making friends (and keeping them) involve using a range of skills. These include being able to recognise when others are open to friendship and knowing how to approach and engage others.  Then of course are the skills needed to keep friendships – which can also be tricky. But let’s start at the beginning with how children can make their first approach more successful…

The following are some tips for primary school aged children who have language skills but they can be modified for those a little less verbal:

Look for interest from other children

Imagine being in a park with lots of children running around. Running up to a random child who looks like they are doing something interesting might get a response but it might also lead to rejection.

Instead, encourage your child to look for other children that appear interested in playing with them. Who are these children? The ones that may already be looking at your child (watching what your child is doing) and the ones with a smile on their face. These are the children that are more likely to be positive about an approach from your child.

Children who are heavily involved in a game (particularly in groups) or playing with other children are less likely to give a positive response. They already have someone to play with. Sometimes groups of children want others to join them…especially if it’s a game that involves lots of running around. However if children have already worked out who they are playing with, they may not welcome approaches from others.

Say Hello

Sounds simple doesn’t it?  However  many children forget to say hello or introduce themselves. And of course, when your child does say “hi” to another child they need to look at them (eye contact) and smile too! This signals to the other child that they are being friendly.

Get Talking

Most of us enjoy it when others show interest in us. Your child asking “What are doing?”, “Can I play too?”, or “What’s that?” are good ways of starting up a conversation. They are also a way of testing the waters to see if the other child is interested in getting to know them too.

When the other child starts talking to your child, this is where conversational skills become important. Your child needs to show interest in what the other child says.  They can also share something about themselves too. All of which helps to build a connection.

Be flexible

It’s great for your child to suggest activities that they and the other child can do. However if the other child wants to play another way or differently your child may need to go with the flow initially. Turn-taking with ideas and games can develop once your child works out that this is someone they want to spend more time with.

Be positive

It’s OK if your child discovers that the other child isn’t that interested or isn’t the friend for them. Children can agree to disagree and part ways too. As a parent we can acknowledge our child’s disappointment but we need to refocus them on all the other children out there that may be the right sort of friend for them.

What to do if things just aren’t working?

The good news is that friendships skills can be taught. Many schools now provide programs targeting social skills and confidence so start by asking what your school may have available.

The internet also has bundles of resources and ideas for parents to access to help their children in this area.

In our Centre we teach social skills one on one in therapy and in various group programs (so children can practice their skills with other children).

Please call the Centre if you would like more information about our services on 9274 7062.

06 Jul 2018

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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Friendship Club Enrolments for Term 3 – Now Open

Friendship Club, Term 3

Jasmin Fyfe from the ABACAS team will be running the Friendship Club for children aged 5-6 years old in Term 3. The program will be on one afternoon after school per week and focus on the social skills children need to make and keep friends.

Social skills programs are small and run by two facilitators to make sure that children have lots of opportunity to practise skills, have fun and make new friends. Jasmin will need to meet with parents of new clients to the Centre to make sure that the program will meet their children’s needs.

For more information about the program please contact Jasmin on 9274 7062.

09 Jun 2018

BY: admin

ABACAS Team

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ABACAS School Holiday Social Skills Programs – Enrolments Now Open

During the school holidays the ABACAS team runs small social skills group programs for children with disabilities. Enrolments are now open for the following groups:

Young Entrepreneurs’ Club

Jenny Lin (Program Manager) and one of the Behaviour Therapists from the ABACAS Team will be running a school holiday program for children aged 10-14 years who are interested in developing their business prowess. Focusing on teamwork, social skills and community skills, the group will work with their team leader  to design, price, advertise and sell their product. The money they make will be used for a pizza party at the end of the holidays (date to be announced).

Who should attend:

This program is best suited to children who have medium to low needs on the autism spectrum.

Days:

Mondays, Wednesdays & Thursdays, 9.30am to 11.00am

Music and Movement Club

Rachel Puan (Assistant Program Manager) will be running the Music and Movement Group these holidays. This group will focus on gross motor, social skills and musical activities to keep kids active during school holidays. While it is will include lots of fun and games, children will also practice listening, teamwork, problem solving and hand, eye/foot coordination and balance. And importantly, they will also have a chance to have fun and make new friends.

Who should attend:

Children will be matched according to age and needs. If we have enough children we will run two groups – a high needs and low needs group.

Days:

Mondays and Wednesdays,  9.30am to 11.00am

Drama Club

Jasmin Fyfe (Assistant Program Manager) with another of our Behaviour Therapists will be running a Drama club for children.  Children will develop a play/performance piece together, designing and creating costumes and stage. The program will include lots of opportunities to practice social skills. Commitment is important because the group will be performing at the end of the school holidays for their families.

Who should attend:

These will be small groups of 3-4 children who will be matched on ability levels.

Days:

To be determined based on expressions of interest from families.

How much will sessions cost?

For groups of 3 or more children, individual fees will be $58.53 per hour.

How do I register?

Please contact reception on 9274 7062 to a express you interest.

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