Services > Social Skills Groups

Overview
Preschool Groups
Elementary Groups
Teen Groups
FAQ

We offer social skills groups serving both children and adolescents. These groups use a combination of empirically validated strategies for teaching social skills, Michelle Garcia Winner’s Social ThinkingTM curriculum, and the PEERS curriculum.
 

  • Preschool Groups (ages 4-6)
  • Children's Groups (ages 7-10 and ages 10-13)
  • Teen Groups (ages 13+)

Groups include six, 60- or 90-minute weekly sessions. Programs are offered year-round, including throughout the summer months. For upcoming groups, please see our office calendar. If a group is currently not offered or if the group has already begun, please contact us so that we can coordinate interest. In some cases, we are able to schedule additional groups based on these requests.
 

AGE RANGE: 4-6 DURATION: 6 SESSIONS LENGTH: 60 MIN LED BY: SARAH SAUNDERS

Preschool social skills groups are designed to focus on skills needed for early school success, such as:
 

  • Following multiple-step group instructions
  • Sharing
  • Turn-taking
  • Beginning to identify emotions in self/others
  • Expressing wants and needs effectively with peers
AGE RANGE: 7-10, 11-13 DURATION: 6 SESSIONS LENGTH: 90 MIN LED BY: HEATHER DUKES-MURRAY

Elementary age groups build upon early cooperative skills to help participants:
 

  • Engage in and sustain age-appropriate conversational exchanges
  • Choose appropriate topics
  • Remain on topic
  • Demonstrate cooperation
  • Use self-regulation techniques
  • Share personal social struggles with fellow peers in order to feel less alone
AGE RANGE: 14-17 DURATION: 6 SESSIONS LENGTH: 90 MIN LED BY: SARAH SAUNDERS

Teen groups focus on helping participants to break abstract social concepts (such as keeping conversations going or taking another person's point of view) into small, concrete steps in a supportive environment. As a group, it is important for teens to know they are not alone. Because of this, the teen group focus also includes supporting one another without judgment and acknowledging areas of growth.

Group Participants
 

Who should enroll?

Our groups are designed for children who would benefit from learning and rehearsing social skills, social pragmatic skills, and expected social behaviors with similar-aged peers will benefit most from our social skills groups. Participants may have trouble making friends, keeping friends, or connecting with peers. These children may also have difficulty attending in a group setting, following directions from adults, or listening to others.
 

Wouldn't 1:1 intervention be better to meet my child's specific needs?

We identify each child's unique behavioral goals based on their difficulty in working and playing with others and set them up with peers so they can get the best practice scenarios. In this way, each group is individually tailored to meet the needs of the children enrolled. If you’re not sure whether your child is a good fit for the group, please contact us so that we can answer your questions on an individual basis.
 

What if my child’s age is outside the group range currently being offered?

We offer programs based on demand in each age group. If your child that does not fit into current group age ranges, please contact us to discuss your need. If possible, we will arrange for additional groups.
 

About Our Groups
 

How large are the groups?

Each group consists of 4-6 children and 1-2 adults.
 

Where do groups meet?

Groups meet at the offices of Meghan Barlow and Associates; however, in some cases, the group members may meet away from the office (e.g., restaurant, ice cream shop, student’s house), as a reward for meeting group goals and/or to create opportunities to practice skills in a real-world setting.
 

Do I need to stay in the building?

Parents of children who are toilet trained and who sign a medical waiver are free to leave for the first 80 minutes of each session (first 45 minutes of preschool sessions). Parents of children not toilet trained are asked to remain in the waiting room to provide bathroom assistance when needed.
 

Our Expert Team
 

Heather Dukes-Murray, Ph.D.

Heather Dukes-Murray, Ph.D.
(Full Bio)

Sarah Saunders, M.A., LPC

Sarah Saunders, M.A., LPCC
(Full Bio)