The ability to engage with their peers in social interaction and play is a key challenge for some children with special needs. Play and social skills learned with an adult therapist may not easily generalise to situations involving other children. To address these issues, Annie’s Centre can offer “playdate” sessions. In these sessions, therapists facilitate a structured “playdate” for two or more clients, providing an opportunity for social and co-operative play skills to be taught and practiced in a supported environment. We match clients based on their age and the level of support they need, to ensure that each child is able to develop their skills with a play partner appropriate to them. Skills targeted in these sessions may include:
- Taking turns
- Negotiating and following rules
- Asking and answering social questions
- Respecting personal space
- Initiating conversation
- Developing independence in peer interactions
Sessions are organised on an individual basis, depending on the availability of appropriate play partners. Depending on the needs of the children attending, the session may be run by one or two therapists. If you are not already accessing services at Annie’s Centre, an initial consultation with one of our Psychologists will be required to ensure that any therapy sessions target skills appropriate to your child.
If you are interested in accessing joint play sessions, please contact us for more information.
Referrals are not required to access joint play sessions. However, you may wish to consider whether you are entitled to rebates or benefits from government programs or private health insurers to offset your expenses.