It’s So Much Work to Be Your Friend:

Helping the Child with Learning Disabilities Find Social Success

Extensive studies have examined students with learning disabilities who have experienced chronic failure in mainstream classes and adults with learning problems who have been unsuccessful in the work place.  Invariably, these studies have clearly demonstrated that this failure is due to the person’s SOCIAL SKILLS, not his ACADEMIC SKILLS.  The majority of people with learning disorders have marked difficulty perceiving, understanding and responding to social situations.  Social isolation, rejection and humiliation are often the result.

This seminar will explore the relationship between learning disabilities and social incompetence and will identify the specific causes for specific social skill deficits.  Field tested strategies will be presented that can be used by parents, teachers, coaches and caregivers to assist students in gaining peer acceptance and developing age-appropriate social skills.

Among the topics covered will be:

  • The impact of social incompetence upon the daily life of children.
  • The direct correlation between social skill deficits and learning disabilities.
  • The generic nature of social skill deficits.
  • A review of the history of social skill instruction and the weaknesses of the current approaches.
  • The impact of paralinguistics (non verbal language) on the development of social competence.
  • Helping the child develop friendships and positive peer relationships.
  • The use of Social Skill Autopsies to improve interaction skills.
  • Teaching the Hidden Social Curriculum  to children to improve peer acceptance.
  • Factors that enhance children’s social acceptance.


  • The participants will understand the link between learning disabilites and social competence.
  • The participants will be familiar with terminology and concepts relted to paralinguistics.
  • The participants will be familiar with the dynamics of childhood reputation.
  • The participants will learn five strategies designed to foster and promote social acceptance in the classroom and community.