Communication and soft skills training for individuals with autism, ADHD, anxiety, co-existing conditions, intellectual and developmental disabilities and other social or relationship challenges.

Foundations for Teens: Communication & Social Relationship Skills

Standard classes run 10 weeks, meeting one time per week for two-hour sessions (may vary based on requests and needs)

Covering key foundational communication and social skills including:

  • Initiating, maintaining, and ending conversations

  • Maintaining two-way conversations

  • Differentiating friend, dating, and work relationships

  • Assessing non-verbal and verbal communication

  • Using electronic communication and social media

  • Maintaining a positive attitude

  • Compromise and conflict resolution

  • Recognizing controversial topics

  • Being flexible

  • Dating basics

  • Bullying, teasing, and embarrassing situations

  • Using humor 

  • Identifying and gaining self-advocacy skills

  • And more...

Enhanced Communication for Teens: Soft & Social Skills for Employment 

Standard classes run 10 weeks, meeting one time per week for two-hour sessions (may vary based on requests and needs)

  • Foundations for Teens recommended prior to taking this class as prerequisite skills are covered to continue building to more complex skills; exception requests evaluated by Balance MI-Skills 

Covering higher level communication, soft, social skills needed for employment including:

  • Conversations and two-way communication

  • Non-verbal and workplace communication

  • Effective virtual communication

  • Small talk and topic shifts

  • Flexibility in the workplace

  • Dating and relationships

  • Planning, organizing, and time management

  • Solving problems, being proactive, and making mistakes

  • Self monitoring and self-management

  • Teamwork and interacting with co-workers

  • Professionalism and attitude

  • Self-advocacy integrated throughout all sessions

  • Strategies to reduce anxiety

  • And more...

Communication Basics for Teens & Adults: Individuals with More Complex Needs

Standard classes run 8 weeks, meeting two times per week for one-hour sessions (may vary based on need of each class)

Program customization and more intensive supports for interpersonal and work-based communications:

  • Individualization of program targeting needs of each participant

  • Maintain 2 to 1 ratio of instructors to participants

  • Reduced class size and session length with more in frequency of sessions

  • Repetition and practice of key skills to gain mastery and fluency of skills

  • Class covers:

    • Rules of conversation (customized and scaled to participant ability)

    • Having two-way conversations; entering and exiting conversations; verbal-nonverbal communication

    • Self-monitoring and self-advocacy to promote independent thinking and communication

Individual (one-on-one) Services

The continued goal is to learn and practice in peer-based groups. This helps with learning and generalizing skills and knowledge then applied to personal, community, and work-based settings. Sometimes it may be helpful to start skill building in a one on one (or individualized) setting, with the goal of moving to a group with peers in a workshop. This is not needed for every individual participating, but may be an option to better prepare for a group setting.

Studying on the Grass
Legs in Jeans