Common Threads individual services for children ages 7-11 are very “hands on”, with all sessions being organized in structured, supportive settings. We incorporate strength-based, fun, hands-on experiences while targeting the “hard work” and individualized goals that have been developed for each child by their parents/guardians and therapists. Children often work on steps needed to build strong successful relationships and a positive self concept during these sessions—such as emotional regulation, increasing flexibility, identifying personal strengths, strategies for dealing with anxiety, expanding interests, engaging in conversation, developing play themes, increasing focus and attention, and following directions and routines. Additionally, children work on the emotional stressors of navigating through life with a diagnosis that makes things a bit more complicated and difficult at times. As always, we encourage parents to be active participants in their child’s therapy services within our center.
Best Buddy is the name of our therapeutic dyads for children ages 7-11 years old. This program brings together two children who are at the same stage of learning to build relationships with others and social skill development, in a therapeutic social setting based upon their strengths. Individual treatment plans for each child within the pairing are developed by the family and the therapists facilitating the dyad.
Skills often addressed include:
- attaining and maintaining a “focused and alert” state with which to begin and engage in interactions
- flexibility within play plans
- social appropriateness
- the importance of compromise within relationship development
- understanding social cues and social rules
- sharing space with a peer during activities
- initiating and sustaining turn taking skills
- taking a break when needed, with the support of an adult, and rejoining engagement with a peer
- problem solving based play activities with a peer
- beginning understanding of others’ perspectives
- beginning to have a sense of beginning and ending a play activity with a peer.
Grade School Life and Social Skills
This social and life skills therapy group will build upon your child’s strengths and interests to support engagement and interaction with peers. While maintaining a focus on positive interactions, your child will participate in activities carefully planned by therapists to target sustaining attention to large group activities, initiating and responding to peers, participating in others’ ideas, and learning practical strategies to support his or her emotional regulation. Throughout this group, therapists will reinforce children as they practice and generalize targeted skills during facilitated and naturally occurring exchanges among group members.
Grade School Mental Health Groups
Our mental health groups for children ages 7-11 will focus on enriching the social and emotional development through hands-on experiences and activities carefully planned by our knowledgeable clinicians. Parents and therapists will work together to develop individual goals, such as increasing self-concept, developing coping skills to manage strong emotions, dealing with peer conflict, making appropriate behavioral choices, and building and maintaining friendships. Each child will have abundant opportunities to express emotions in a safe, supportive environment while developing and practicing strategies that support positive behavioral changes.
Mental Health Services for Children and Adolescents
Young children and adolescents can have mental, emotional, and behavioral challenges that are genuine, painful, and costly. These difficult challenges, often called “disorders,” are sources of stress, worry, and confusion for these children and their families, as well as for schools and communities.
The number of children and adolescents and their families who are affected by mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders is significant. It is estimated that as many as one in five children and adolescents may have a mental health disorder that can be identified and require treatment.
Mental health disorders in children and adolescents are caused by biology, environment, or a combination of the two. Examples of biological factors are genetics, chemical imbalances in the body, and damage to the central nervous system, such as head injuries. Many environmental factors can also adversely affect mental health, including exposure to violence, extreme stress, and the loss of an important person.
Working together, families and communities can help children and adolescents with mental disorders. A broad range of services is often necessary to meet the needs of these young individuals and their families.
Our individual and group therapeutic services for children and adolescents are often very “hands on”, and are organized in structured, supportive settings. We incorporate strength-based, fun, hands-on experiences while targeting the “hard work” and individualized goals that have been developed for each child by their parents/guardians and therapists. As always, we encourage parents to be active participates in their child’s therapy services within our center. Groups are also available for siblings—the often forgotten family members who at times can be greatly impacted by being “witness” to the challenges their brother or sister is experiencing.