Social communication is a multi-faceted, complex interaction involving mastery in many of the following,
• Understanding non-verbal cues
• Command of tone of voice
• Command of facial expressions
• Understanding different purposes of conversation
• Sense of humour
• Familiarity with social courtesies
• Making the abstract concrete
• Visual structure and predictable routines
• Activities that provide support for language abilities
• Interactions that provide focus on peers and self-awareness
• Generalisations Social communication can, therefore, be challenging for many children with autism. Many want to be socially interactive, make friends and form relationships, be included within the classroom and wider community, but find it difficult because of the many social conventions needed to achieve effective communication. Children with autism experiencing such difficulties may find it hard to understand the messages being given, such as the meaning we put into our voice, the expressions on our faces, and gestures such as waving, pointing or shrugging Expected Outcomes
Participants will have an increased understanding of
• How social communication is defined.
• The social communication difficulties are experienced by those with autism
• Best practices in supporting the child in the classroom, family home and wider community
• The importance of visual information as it remains available long enough to enable the child to focus on it or return to it as needed to establish memory for the message it is communicating. Visual tools provide a non-transient foundation for more effective communication.
• How to use the strengths of the child with autism to help him or her communicate effectively.