Get in Touch with Ascend Autism!

Get in Touch with Ascend Autism!

Ascend Autism ABA Therapy Center in Westport, CT Is Now Open! Begin Your Enrollment Today!

Integrated Social Skills Learning
for Children with Autism

Social Skills & Children with Autism

Social skills are so ingrained in our daily lives and interactions with others that we rarely, if ever, stop to think about them. For children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), it can be more difficult to understand social interactions and know how to integrate properly in a social setting.


Children with ASD tend to experience challenges with communication (both verbal and non-verbal), empathy, and behaviors in social situations. At Ascend Autism, we integrate social skills learning into our ABA therapy programs, providing individualized plans for each child aimed at improving behaviors in social situations.

Social Skills Defined

Social skills are learned behaviors that every person uses throughout their interactions with other people. These skills involve showing an interest in other people, including topics that are important to them, sharing information about themselves, and making “small talk.”

Children who have differing degrees of autism spectrum disorder may not understand when it’s expected for them to engage, how to engage appropriately in a given situation, or how to connect with their peers.

The ability to connect with other people is just one element of learned social skills. Countless other elements of social skills are both subtle and more obvious, including:

At Ascend Autism, we integrate opportunities to practice social skills throughout our full-day and half-day ABA therapy programs. These opportunities provide children with the ability to practice their social skills in a natural setting, boosting their confidence and encouraging them to continue to grow.

Helping Children And Families Succeed!

Ascend Autism’s Approach to Social Skills Learning

Social skills learning activities are targeted throughout the day, multiple times per day using Natural Environment Teaching (NET). Natural environment teaching is a personalized teaching method focused on letting the child take the lead while learning new skills in an environment they are in every day.


NET focuses on using everyday situations for language and social skills instruction instead of formal teaching settings. It happens in a typical daily environment, allows for more social opportunities, promotes generalization, and stimulates more spontaneous verbal behavior. This approach also helps minimize negative behaviors in children by emphasizing motivation and using consequences directly linked to that motivation.

Who Can Participate in Social Skills Learning at Ascend Autism?

Social skills learning activities are integrated into Ascend’s ABA therapy programs for all children enrolled in our half-day and full-day programs regardless of age or level of ASD. Social skills activities are adapted for different age groups and developmental levels as we create individualized plans for each specific child.

Some social skills are targeted naturally while others need to be targeted specifically due to the spontaneous nature of that specific social situation. Some social skills are identified as long-term goals, while others are defined as short-term goals that build on each other to master the overall long-term goal. All of these factors – age, developmental level, and identified goals – are included in the unique plan for each child.

What to Look For in a Social Skills Program

At Ascend Autism, our integrated social skills learning activities provide a safe, supportive, and nurturing place for children on the autism spectrum to improve their social skills and practice behaviors together.

Important elements of any ASD treatment program of this nature include:

Learn More About Ascend Autism’s Social Skills Program Today

Ascend Autism is here to help families and their children navigate social skills and improve challenging behaviors.  We offer full-day, half-day, and after-school programs at our ABA therapy centers in Hawthorne, New York, Westport, Connecticut, and Nashville, Tennessee. In-home services are available in Westchester County, New York, and throughout Connecticut.

We are dedicated to providing the highest level of treatment for your child. Find out more about our programs today!

How Our Autism Therapy Program Begins


Parents’ Testimonials