The purpose of using social skills training with adolescents
Social skills are techniques that facilitate communication and interaction among people. Social skills training is a behavior therapy that aims to change the behaviors of people. In training adolescents, social skills are techniques preferred by trainers for interaction and teaching (Ashford, LeCroy, and Lortie, 2010). Some of the social skills applied in training include the application of techniques such as asking questions, maintaining eye contact, and creating an interactive learning environment.
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Social skills facilitate the training of socially isolated adolescents who find it difficult to interact with others in social settings. The skills are important in training such adolescents because they help create a social environment and promote inclusion (Ashford, LeCroy, and Lortie, 2010). They make training interactive. For example, they enable participants to engage and participate in training sessions. Additionally, social skills enable adolescents with disabilities to interact with their peers during such training. For example, in a classroom environment, students with disabilities, such as the inability to speak, can participate by using sign language (Freitag et al, 2013).
Additionally, social skills can be integrated into other training programs. For example, in training where the instructor integrates social skills such as demonstrations and chats to enhance different activities, and this facilitates understanding. (Ashford, LeCroy and Lortie, 2010).
Why using social skills is an effective mode of intervention and prevention with adolescents
Training using social skills helps learners develop positive emotions by enabling them to learn to create positive associations with others and refrain from destructive actions such as drug abuse. For example, training adolescents to stop abusing drugs suggests using social skills such as demonstration and interactive learning. Learners can acquire new skills, change their attitude and gain motivation that enables them to change from negative behaviors, such as drug abuse to positive, such as communication (Ashford, LeCroy and Lortie, 2010).
Additionally, social skills that involve close interactions between coaches and audience teache skills such as drug refusal (Ashford, LeCroy and Lortie, 2010). For example, this form of training provides an opportunity for learners to ask questions without fear of gaining a deeper understanding of a certain issue. The method also encourages openness and is an effective means of countering peer pressures among adolescents.
Freitag et al (2013) state that using social skills helps adolescents understand and share different opinions and views. The skills also enable them to have conversations on different issues that affect society. This form of training generates feelings for adolescents that help them develop empathy.
Educators can also incorporate social skills as proactive interventions that replace negative behaviors with constructive ones. Training using social skills also teaches adolescents to behave in a rewarding way (Ashford, LeCroy, and Lortie, 2010). Training using social skills provides a platform for learning from others because the method encourages sharing life experiences. In addition, learners can quickly learn from their peers’right behaviors through interactions, observations, and questioning.
Social interactions among adolescents are essential for training because they enhance good behavior and emotional adjustment (Ashford, LeCroy, and Lortie, 2010). They facilitate positive behaviors among adolescents in schools, at home, and in social settings. This means that emotions that adolescents acquire during training using this method helps in controlling their negative behaviors. Emotions in social skills training enable adolescents to adjust to positive and constructive actions within society.
According to Freitag et al (2013), emotional and physical changes in adolescents during puberty also make the social learning approach to be a significant method in training. At this stage, adolescents have desires to associate and interact with each other. Applying social skills in training ensures that participants exchange information on important matters freely. For example, it is easy for adolescents to comprehend information about smoking if the methods employed are open and interactive. Therefore, social skills in training become the best intervention for teaching adolescents different issues that affect their society.
Ashford, J. B., LeCroy, C. W., &Lortie, K. L. (2010).Human behavior in the social environment: A multidimensional perspective. Australia: Brooks/Cole, Cengage Learning
Freitag, C.M., Cholemkery, H., Elsuni, L., Kroeger, A.K., Bender, S., Kunz, C., &Kieser, M. (2013). The group based social skills training SOSTA-TRA in children and adolescents with high functioning autism spectrum disorder-study protocol of the randomized, multi-Centre controlled SOSTA-net trial. Trials, 14(1), 1-12. Web.