Social Skills Groups in Full Swing at Texas' ADD Wellness Group; Growth and Excitement Continues

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Therapists balance fun, learning of basic social skills for better school experience, making friends, and quality of life at Woodlands' office.

Tuesday and Wednesday nights at the ADD Wellness Group’s home office in The Woodlands, TX provide a unique opportunity for school-age youngsters to come work on their social skills in a warm and nonjudgmental environment, a far cry from the often unforgiving school environment. “With summer now coming to a close, we’ve seen an increase in students coming in to learn how to cope better with social demands,” says therapist Adrienne Langelier, who runs two of the groups; one for 10-12 year-olds, and another for 7-9 year-olds.

Each group gathers at five o’ clock and works together on a chosen topic or skill for the hour, for example, following instructions or listening skills. “It’s important to keep the child engaged and the session moving along, so I try to balance work and play”. Sometimes it gets difficult if the group gets too energized, as some members of the group have attention-deficit or Asperger’s diagnoses, which can correlate with difficulty functioning socially. Not everyone who comes to group, however, carries any diagnoses.

“If a child has trouble functioning socially, it could be related to frontal lobe function of the brain”, asserts Langelier; “this region houses accurate reading of facial cues, eye contact, and impulse control so the listener does not interrupt others”. Even with deficits, these skills can still be trained; however, it may take more repetition and a “back to basics” approach in training these children. The good news is, this is how we learn and internalize skills and over time, these children begin to function much more proficiently in social situations. “One thing I am constantly emphasizing is the need for consistency, and that these skills don’t happen overnight”, asserts Langelier. Over time, she as seen friendships form both inside and out of group time as her students gain confidence and baseline interpersonal skills.

With a little patience, consistency, and parents also on board to reinforce learning, these children can begin to thrive in social and school situations. Inquiries for these open groups can be made at cs(at)addwoodlands(dot)com or at 281-528-4226.

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Adrienne Langelier
ADD Wellness Group of The Woodlands
(830) 237-4822
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