Social Anxiety and Navigation

When children are unclear about how to navigate social situations effectively they can begin to internalize these challenges. Instead of connected play these children may isolate or inadvertently push away peer relationships through awkward social attempts. At Early Insights we teach pragmatics, utilizing specific strategies and techniques, including The Personal Power Tools curriculum, to empower children and provide key lessons and opportunities for social development.

Personal Power Tools

Everyone has an invisible tool box. What's inside your tool box you're thinking? It's filled with tools to help with self regulation and social navigation. The Healthy Foundations Program focuses on teaching children of all ages and abilities about their brains and bodies to make healthy life choices. The “Personal Power Tools” curriculum, endorses teaching "Life Skills". Personal Power Tools is a framework to support children in learning tools to help:

Some examples of Personal Power Tools and how they support Executive Functions:

- catch the impulse, before it strikes (impulse control)

- reset my system, before I unravel (emotional control)

- acknowledge that all of my feelings are OK and will change (metacognition)

- make a soothing thought when I don't get my way (flexibility)

- use whole body listening TM to help me pay attention/focus (sustained attention)

- make a set-up statement and use EFT to help calm myself (emotional control)

- love myself for who I am (self esteem, self concept)

Everyone has strengths and challenges and using tools can help us learn from mistakes, feel better and experience more joy overall!

Social Communication

Social communication rules may vary across cultures and within cultures. It is important to understand the rules of your communication partner. 

An individual with pragmatic difficulties may:

  • say inappropriate or unrelated things during conversations
  • tell stories in a disorganized way
  • have little variety in language use

It is not unusual for children to have pragmatic problems in only a few situations. However, if problems in social language use occur often and seem inappropriate considering the child's age, a pragmatic disorder may exist. Pragmatic disorders often coexist with other language challenges such as vocabulary development or grammar. Pragmatic problems can lower social acceptance. Peers may avoid having conversations with an individual with a pragmatic disorder.