Social Thinking

 

Social thinking allows people to make sense of the world around them. It helps people decide how to behave or interact with others in different scenarios based on their goals for the interaction. 

The Social Thinking Methodology teaches the process and strategies for improving an individual’s ability to do social thinking and related social skills.

The Three-Part Process of Social Thinking, as Taught through the Social Thinking Methodology

  1. Our social thinking is our meaning maker. We observe and listen in order to interpret the perspectives of others. The first step to improving social thinking is to keenly observe the social world that surrounds us.
  2. When seeking to engage or simply share space with others, we use our social thinking to adapt our social behaviors (social skills) effectively in order for us to meet our social goals. In order to do this, we must learn strong self-awareness, self-monitoring, and self-control. We must learn how to adapt our physical posture depending on the context, how we use our eyes to better understand others and communicate, and tools for conversational language to relate to others. 
  3. Our social thinking and social skills directly impact how others feel about us. This impacts how we are treated, how we feel about others, and ultimately - how we feel about ourselves!  At the end of the day, our social experience is an emotional experience. The purpose of social thinking is to produce social behavior so that you give others the emotional experience that you intend to give. The Social Thinking Methodology teaches people to be more aware of their emotions and to better predict and relate to the emotions of others.

The Social Thinking Methodology can help people of all abilities and ages, but we find it is especially helpful at The Academy at Forest View for students with autism spectrum disorders learning to navigate the world.