Last week I was sketching ideas on the back of an envelope in the middle of one of my social groups. It was a picture of a kid with a speech bubble. There were choices to decide how people would react when a statement was said. I’m finding in one particular social group I have, we really struggle to understand the impact of words on conversational partners. When they make a comment they aren’t reading the reaction of their partner and making adjustments. So I went home that night and found some positive/negative reaction pictures. After using those for a while last week I realized there were two big parts of perspective taking that my students didn’t get. They weren’t tailoring their message to their conversational partner. That is, they weren’t using what they know about that person and weren’t making inferences about new people. Typical communicators can take in the information they observe and tailor their message. The other difficulty was in thinking about how their words would impact their partner. If I reacted with a scrunched face to a comment, they would say ‘what’?, not understanding the problem. I’m guessing if you’re treating kids with Autism, ADHD, NVLD, or other social deficits you have this same issue. After several different trial and error activities I’m sharing a few that worked for us! It’s truly tested by my students. I used the Thinking About You Thinking About Me perspective taking model from Michelle Garcia Winner. Perspective Taking Understanding Perspective taking and Theory of Mind is a topic that is very difficulty for children with social cognitive learning delays. This speech therapy activity is meant to help children understand the 4 parts of active perspective taking essential for social interactions. (Winner, 2007) All people have thoughts about each other. Every time you interact with someone you think about them. Even if you don’t speak you are thinking about each other. Perspective taking happens when you realize that your behaviors and words affect the feelings of those with whom you interact. You modify your language and behavior during each interaction because other people react differently. This activity targets steps 1 & 3. 4 different posters are included. These introduce perspective taking, describe the 4 step process, demonstrate how to make inferences regarding feelings, and list several emotions as a reference for your students. Activity 1: 72 photos, two different prompt cards. In the first activity, students will look at a photo and identify what they think/know/guess or answer structured questions to make inferences about feelings. Activity 2: 12 Photos Sheets (including 72 photos). Teacher prompt sheets for each photo sheet. In the second activity, student are presented with a mat. The mat has 6 different images for a the given situation (ie: playground, locker, teacher, video games). The students work on identifying and predicting how different statements might make their conversational partner feel. Read the scenario at the top of the card. Each question card has example phrases that might be uttered during a conversation. When you read a sentence the student should point to the picture that represents the most likely response. Ask the student what that person would think about that statement. I have used with activity with children on the autism spectrum from grades 2-7. This will highly depend on their cognitive ability and skill level. You can use the images and adjust them to your student’s levels. 37 pages with 72 photo images. Includes 4 easy to use posters. You can find this document for sale on my Teachers Pay Teachers store! If you’d like to enter to win a copy, use the rafflecopter widget below! a Rafflecopter giveaway
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