Registration for Social Skills Classes January 28th-March 4th

Registration is now open for our next six-week session of social skills classes. Classes begin on Sunday, January 28th and run through Sunday March 4th.The total cost for a six-week session is $225.00. Each group will have no more than 5 students so we can practice “thinking” about thinking as well as individualize for each child. Teacher letters will be provided weekly so all of the adults in your child’s life are using the same terminology and have the same expectations. 

Questions about our classes? Please e-mail or call us with your questions and we would be happy to connect with you to tell you more!

If you are new to our groups, please complete a registration form found here Registration for Social Skills Classes January 28th through March 4th 2018 and e-mail it to us at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com.

If you are a returning family, please fill out this condensed registration form and send it via e-mail Registration for Social Skills Classes January 28th through March 4th Condensed 2018

For some students, obtaining and utilizing good social skills do not come naturally. They move through their environment having a difficult time communicating and understanding more than just direct language-based interactions. We typically begin intuitively learning key social skills around age three through observation and parallel play. When these skills are not intuitively understood, they can be taught cognitively. For example, good social skills include eye contact, conversational turn taking, and flexible thinking. For some students, these skills need to be taught and practiced in a non-judgmental environment.  Previous posts about Social Learning can be found here Social Learning and Who Benefits From Social Skills Classes? 

We are offering three different sessions so please read the specifics below. As always, reach out to us with questions at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com. We believe that empowering the parent/guardian is equally important in empowering the child. Please plan on staying for the parent session of your child’s class to learn what your child is learning and how to help your child at home. As we send your weekly teacher letter, we encourage you to let your child’s teacher know that he or she can also reach out to us for extra support or questions for your child in the classroom. We’re all here to help your child grow in his/her social learning.

All classes are held at University Ridge Office Center, 1905 JN Pease Place, Suite 201, Charlotte, NC 28262.

 Social Communication-This class is full. If you would like to be put on the waiting list in case of any cancelations, please send us an e-mail.

This session focuses on the different types of  communication: body language, spoken language, and comparative vs literal language.   Students will learn why we participate in different types of communication as well as understand the sometimes “hidden meanings” within these communications.  Once these concepts are taught, students will practice making “smart guesses” to assist them in understanding how others may be perceiving them in various social situations. Does this match how they want to be perceived? With students gaining the above skills, they will begin to move past just thinking about themselves and will be better able to think about others so they can participate in social situations with more success.

This group meets every Sunday from 1:00-2:00.

 Mindful Thinking and Zones of Regulation

Zones of Regulation teaches emotional self-regulation with any emotion through building social and sensory skills.  Mindfulness  provides the foundation of awareness through five realms; physical, mental, emotional, social, and global literacy. Mindfulness is a way of being. Through conscious observation (mindfulness) of our behaviors and thoughts we gain personal power.   This process is both physiological and mental. Thinking is a powerful tool that we can access within each of the four zones to help with emotion regulation. By categorizing our thoughts and emotions we can build a toolbox that will empower us to monitor without judging, and choose our responses successfully. Students will also learn how to identify a problem and the steps to solve it.  Learning how to self-regulate is a skill that does not develop overnight. It takes time, patience, understanding, and support. This is where training your brain to think Mindfully can be a powerful tool in your toolbox of self-regulation.

This group meets every Sunday from 1:00-2:00.

For further reading, here is an article about the benefits of teaching Mindfulness with Social Thinking https://www.socialthinking.com/Articles?name=Mindfulness+and+Social+Thinking&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=article_Mindfulness_and_Social_Thinking_Perfect_Companions

 Self-Awareness-Learning How To “Think” About Thinking Socially

This is the perfect beginning class if you are new to our social skills groups. This six-week session lays a foundation of skills that your child can continue to build upon and grow his or her social thinking. During this session, children and parents will learn the differences between self-awareness, self-monitoring, and self-control. Students will learn about “hidden” social expectations in different environments, how to make social observations to learn those “hidden” rules, how behaviors are connected to emotions, strengthen observation/imitation skills, how to gain self-awareness with individual behaviors, move into self-monitoring tools for shifting negative behaviors into positive ones, how to identify if a problem is a big one or little one, and learn how to use your whole body to listen. As we continue to teach these skills, the group will begin to understand that people have a perspective that is different from their own and how to navigate a social interaction using this knowledge. Each child will choose a personal behavior goal and learn tools to help create a shift in awareness and behaviors.

There are two sessions being offered for this class so please be sure to check your preferred time on the registration form.  The first group meets every Sunday from 3:00–4:00 and the second group meets every Sunday from 4:30-5:30.

If you’re not sure if our group is the right fit for your child or have any further questions, we would love to talk with you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com.

Haley for website

With Appreciation,

Christina and Wendy

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Mindful Minute

Mindfulness can be an abstract word and concept.  How can we be “mindful” throughout our day? What does that mean? How do I actually “do” that?

According to a study from the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, mindfulness is defined as “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.”  You can read this fantastic article here https://www.socialthinking.com/Articles?name=Mindfulness%20and%20Social%20Thinking

Our Mindfulness class is taught by Maria Hartemann.  Just like our social skills classes, Maria is taking what can be an abstract concept and is teaching it in a concrete way.  These tools and techniques can be taught to all children and adults.   This morning while driving to school, (Christina’s family) practiced the “Mindful Minute” from yesterday’s class. The kids talked about what they learned mindfulness to be and then we all  practiced a “Mindful Minute”.  Just like social learning, you can grow your awareness and ability to be mindful throughout your day.  This has countless positive benefits from stress/anxiety reduction, increased attention span, and improved impulse control.  Just like learning social skills, or any new skill, mindful techniques need to be practiced daily.

We would love to have you join us for Maria’s next class on February 19th.  Please click on the tab “Upcoming Events” on our website for further details.  Or, if you have questions, reach out to us at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com.

We’ve included a few pictures from this past Sunday’s Mindfulness class.

With Appreciation,

Christina and Wendy

Mindfulness Class This Sunday

We have a guest blogger today, Maria Hartemann.  She will be teaching our Mindfulness classes once a month.  We are very excited for this opportunity!  We will be hosting  this Mindfulness class this Sunday, January 22nd from 12:20-1:00 and again on February 19th. Each class costs $20.00 which includes a parent and child. Additional children are $7.00. If you would like to sign up, please send us an e-mail at confidentsolutions7@gmail.com and let us know you’re coming! We will send you a PayPal link to reserve your spot. All classes are held at 9700 Research Dr., Suite 132, Charlotte, NC 28262.   Words from Maria….

People talk a lot about “being mindful” and about how “mindfulness” can benefit you both physically and mentally. They say that it can help to relieve stress, to calm your thoughts, to ease sleep problems, and to gain focus. So what is mindfulness (you may ask)? To me, mindfulness is synonymous with awareness.  It means that you are able to be present and aware of this exact moment.  It does not require you to shut down to the world around you. Rather, it asks you to recognize that the world, distractions, noises, and thoughts will still occur and attempt to pull you from this moment. Practicing mindfulness means that amongst all the distractions that life throws your way, you are able to look at them without judgement and always come back to the now. It means that you are able to come back to your breath, to a state of calm, and to the pause before action or response. From there, you can move through your day with more peace and with mindful awareness.  In other words, “mindfulness” is meant to be a way of moving through your life with more awareness and the ability to focus on the present moment.  Simple enough, right?

Join me for our class this Sunday where we will be doing some exercises to help you begin to create a mindfulness practice in your day-to-day life.

Joyfully,

Maria Hartemann

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Parent and Child Meditation Class Tomorrow

Just a reminder that our parent and child meditation class will be held tomorrow evening.  If you’re interested in coming, please check out the details here Basic Meditation Class for Parent and Child

Registration for our next sessions of social classes will be opening up this week.  Details will follow in a separate post.

Happy Monday!

Christina and Wendy

 

Guest Blogger on Mindful Meditation

We are fortunate to have a guest blogger provide information about the importance of mindful meditation.  Maria Hartemann will be teaching a short mindful meditation  at the December 4th social skills classes.  If you would like more information about the classes or how to register, please click here Registration for Holiday Session

 

There are countless studies these days that laud the benefits of meditation. From medical (lowering your blood pressure), to educational (increasing your ability to focus), meditation is now being acknowledged and recommended by experts in various fields.

When I first started meditating, one of the most significant differences that I noticed was the fact that I was finally able to calm my “monkey mind” and fall asleep at night in under an hour! That had been a serious issue for me for as along as I can remember (even as a child!). I was a night owl, not because I found myself to have an incredibly sharp mind in the late hours, but rather because I couldn’t seem to gain control over my thoughts! A night owl by default, I guess you would say. However, with continued practice, that hour became forty-five minutes, then thirty minutes, and down and down. These days, unless I have a pressing issue on my mind, I am usually asleep within ten minutes of hitting the pillow.

As if this wasn’t enough of a reason, I also have experimented with using meditation or conscious calming of my mind, to lower my blood pressure. Always one for conducting a good experiment, I have tested the “meditation can lower your blood pressure” theory in 2 ways. The first was at the doctor’s office. I can’t say that I love going to the doctor, so when I go, I must admit that I am not my most peaceful/best self. I get nervous and my blood pressure has been elevated on occasion during the initial exam. After having one questionable reading, I used a few breathing and centering techniques that are a part of my meditation practice. When they took my blood pressure a second time (yes, it was alarmingly high the first and warranted another reading), they were shocked to see how different the second reading was! To the point where the nurse asked if I had been nervous when I first came in 🙂 Ummmm, yes. The other method that I used to try quite often, was to go to the pharmacy area and use their armband to test myself. I would sit down, not nervous, just a regular person, take my blood pressure and then take it again while using centering and breathing. Even a slight decrease was consistent. Try it! It’s actually quite amazing.

Check out some of these links and see how schools have integrated “mindfulness” or meditation into their school days.

https://www.edutopia.org/stw-student-stress-meditation

http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2014/01/should-schools-teach-kids-to-meditate/283229/ (this one is long and does talk about meditation/mindfulness in conjunction with yoga, but it has some great insights).

http://www.mindfulschools.org/about-mindfulness/research/

Meditation/mindfulness, whether it’s 3 breaths a day or 30 minutes a day, can be beneficial to you no matter your age. I look forward to meeting you at the December 4th social skills class to help teach you and your child how to do quick mindful meditations in any setting.

Maria Hartemann

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With Appreciation,

Christina and Wendy