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Zooming In with Social Thinking: Strategies for Concrete Learners

Posted October 22, 2021

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Friday, October 22 - Friday, October 29
9:00 am - 12:10 pm

  • ACT - Autism Community Training
  • 604-205-5467
  • 85 - $150

Recording available for one month after the live stream
Web Streaming to Canadian residents only

Presented by Ryan Hendrix, MS, CCC-SLP

About the Event

In this two-part presentation, on successive Friday mornings, presenter Ryan Hendrix will use Social Thinking® methodology to focus on the needs of social learners who struggle with social attention and social interpretation. The strengths, differences, challenges, and needs of different types of social emotional learners are not necessarily revealed with a diagnosis. While a diagnosis of autism spectrum is routinely used as a catchall to describe three very different types of social emotional learners as outlined in the DSM-5, many individuals who struggle with social emotional learning are not autistic. The Social Thinking–Social Communication Profile (ST–SCP) is one way to explore the learning characteristics of different social learning styles to better understand the individual, regardless of diagnostic label.

Please note that registration is for both days. The presentations will be live from Santa Clara, California. Recordings will be available until November 30 2021.

Session Details

Part 1: Friday, October 22, 2021, 9:00am to 12:10pm Pacific Time

Understanding and Supporting the Social Emotional Learning Needs of Challenged Social Communicators

Part 1 will explore the social learning needs of individual(s) who tend to be very literal in how they interpret and respond to social information. Using video from treatment sessions, the characteristics of five different types of social learners and those considered Challenged Social Communicators (CSC) will be explored. Examples will be given of how these social learners interpret information in a highly literal manner, contributing to their extreme challenges with problem-solving, as well as their learning strengths. Practical strategies to encourage the development of fundamental social concepts will be demonstrated to explain why some core lessons may seem basic but are essential to teaching what is happening in the world around us. Treatment recommendations will focus on helping students increase their flexibility when interpreting what’s happening in their social world.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  1. Describe two or more core characteristics of the Challenged Social Communicator and explain the impact on social and academic learning
  2. Explain why it’s essential to track what another person knows or doesn’t know when co-existing or interacting in a classroom or home
  3. Define one strategy to help students who are Challenged Social Communicators figure out “who knows what.” 

Part 2 – Friday, October 29, 9:00am to 12:10pm Pacific Time

Strategies for Expanding Social Emotional Learning in Emerging Social Communicators

Social learning is embedded within many academic standards including reading comprehension, narrative language, peer engagement and group work.  Video case studies will explore the social emotional learning trajectory of Emerging Social Communicators (ESCs) who are academically bright as well as very literal interpreters. We’ll explore common learning strengths, differences, and challenges. Three different types of social emotional learning strategies are often helpful for this cohort, beginning in elementary school and progressing through high school. We’ll also review longitudinal case studies of those who have graduated from university. Activities for different age groups will also be explored to promote social learning in the group treatment setting. This learning is slow and deep, with the goal being to help individuals improve in their social learning goals compared to their own abilities. Attendees appreciate the honest and very practical information shared on this day.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  1. Describe two or more core characteristics of Emerging Social Communicators and explain the impact on social and academic learning
  2. Explain the connection between academic standards, social learning, and the challenges of literal learners using the Social Thinking–Social Learning Tree
  3. Describe at least two practical lessons to teach: “I know I have my own thoughts/feelings” and “I know others can have thoughts/feelings different from mine.”

Visit the Event Registration page for full details.

Special Rate for BC Educators until October 4, 2021. See details here.

Bursaries are available. If you self-identify as Indigenous, or work for an Indigenous organization, apply to our Bursary Program for the Indigenous Community. Learn more.

Questions? Contact ACT at



Zooming In with Social Thinking: Strategies for Concrete Learners

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