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We are excited to welcome you to the new official blog of Sandbox Therapy Group. Thank you for taking the time to read our very first blog post. We will be adding content on a regular basis over the coming weeks and months, so we hope that you will return often for interesting and informative articles that will help enrich and improve your life and the lives of your loved ones. Topics will include all of the therapies that we provide at Sandbox Therapy Group, including occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, and other psychological services. Our discussions will also cover both child therapy and adult therapy. You can subscribe to our blog to receive a handy email whenever a new blog post is added. If you have any questions about the content of this or any future blog posts, do feel free to get in touch to discuss the matter in more detail. Now onto the blog post…

Children on the autism spectrum have a range of skills and disabilities that impact their everyday functioning. One thing all people with autism share, regardless of their severity or age, is difficulty with social communication. Social communication is defined as a language used in social settings. This ranges from the ability to greet others appropriately to understanding ambiguous and non-literal language, both verbally and non-verbally. As one can imagine, social communication is the core of our relationship with others, extending from the school and workplace to home and everywhere in between. Although social skills can be taught explicitly in a one-on-one environment, this is not always enough. Often, our children cannot generalize these skills to real-life environments and when they need them most.

Here at Sandbox Therapy Group, we offer two distinct social groups. Facilitated by both an occupational therapist and a speech-language therapist, our goal is to integrate therapy approaches and create wholesome opportunities for our children to grow as social communicators. While we do believe less-structured environments create greater learning opportunities, our therapists have specific goals for each child. Our OT’s job is to promote the use of self-regulation and independent problem-solving. Our ST is ensuring all children are getting the chance to initiate, respond, and explore topics of interest between peers. Our ST’s are also making sure our children are applying their pragmatic knowledge to the group setting. Meaning, are you reading facial expressions and body language? Are you staying on topic or shifting topics appropriately? Although our children will have a foundation for their specific social goals, it is necessary for them to practice these skills in a safe, supportive atmosphere.

Our social groups run every other Wednesday from 5:45 to 6:20. We have our Littles Group for children aged 5-8 to target fundamental play skills and social norms in a group setting, and our Primary Group for children aged 8-12 to target higher-level pragmatic skills (e.g., understanding and responding to body language, understanding humor) in a group setting.

Come play in the Sandbox!