Social Connection Group

BIG’s Social Connection Groups are for boys who could benefit from concrete social skill-building and a positive social experience. Each group focuses on teaching tools to boys to help them become better connected to peers. Specifically, the goal of the social connection groups is twofold:

  1. To expand boys’ social skill toolbox through concrete skill building. This is accomplished through active discussion, step-by-step instruction, in-vivo modeling, active coaching, constructive feedback, and extensive role-playing. The boys are also encouraged to complete weekly integration assignments, for which they earn points, which can then be used to buy rewards at the end of each group session. Caretakers are actively involved in the program by receiving extensive information on each of the skills learned and by encouraging and helping their boys complete the integration assignments.
  2. To provide each boy with a positive, social experience during which he is respected and respectful, as well as supported and supportive. It is hoped that this BIG experience will translate into social confidence and competency. Put differently, it is BIG’s hope that each boy will reflect back on his group experience and think, “I’m really glad I did that. I made some friends and didn’t feel like I was the only one struggling with things”.

Group Length and Ages Served: The social connection groups run in 8-week cycles. Between cycles, a two to three-week break usually occurs, after which time another cycle begins. Given the breadth of social skill development among children and teens, it is often the case that many of the same boys will stay enrolled in numerous consecutive cycles to continue to learn new and exciting social skills as well as to practice and integrate previously learned skills from earlier cycles.

The age breakdown for each of the offered social connection groups is as follows: 6-8 years, 8-11 years, 12-14 years, and 15-18 years. However, age is not the sole determining factor for group placement, as each boy’s emotional, social, and behavioral functioning are assessed prior to placement.

Enrollment: If you are interested in enrolling a boy into the social connection group program, please contact Dr. Miller at 858-761-2256 or boysinstitute@sbcglobal.net. Dr. Miller will set up an initial, face-to-face intake/consultation in order to determine which group would best meet your boy’s needs.

Sample of First Cycle Curriculum: Click here to review the skills taught and topics addressed during a typical, initial cycle.