PEERS Program (serving PARTICIPANTS aged 13-18)
The PEERS® curriculum is a manualized 16-week intervention that was developed to teach social and friendship skills to cognitively able adolescents with ASD, along with typically developing peers.
During weekly 90-minute sessions, small groups of adolescents are taught social skills including conversational skills, appropriate use of electronic communication, choosing appropriate friends, appropriate use of humor, entering and exiting a conversation, steps for having appropriate get-togethers, good sportsmanship, handling rejection, handling disagreements, and handling rumors and gossip. Parents are simultaneously learning the same material and are trained to coach their adolescents as they complete weekly homework assignments related to the course material. PEERS is offered to teens between the ages of 13-18 and who are in at least seventh through twelfth grades.
Teen Volunteer Opportunity
Additionally, we are looking for teens aged 13-18 to volunteer alongside their peers with autism. As a PEERS teen volunteer, you will be demonstrating appropriate social skills, giving feedback to our teens with autism, and actively participating in each session. We are looking for teens who are comfortable initiating conversations, are willing to have phone calls and online get-togethers, and show up each week with a positive attitude. At the completion of the program, you may request a letter of recommendation, and have a better understanding of autism.
Participants can look forward to learning the following skills:
- Using appropriate conversational skills
- Finding common interests with peers
- Appropriately using humor
- Entering & exiting conversations
- Handling rumors and gossip
- Handling arguments & disagreements
- Choosing appropriate friends
- Making phone calls to friends
- Being a good host during get-togethers
- Being a good sport
- Changing a bad reputation
- Handling rejection, teasing & bullying
We are currently enrolling for our Spring 2022 session taking place each Thursday starting Jan. 20-May. 12 from 4-5:30 p.m.
Please note: Due to social gatherings and community restrictions, participants will meet using Zoom.
For more information or to enroll, please contact Cheyanne Schulz at TSchulz@autismcenter.org or 480-582-9493.
- Private pay
- Empowerment Scholarship Account Program (to take advantage of the ESA, participants must already have an empowerment scholarship before beginning the intake process)