Friendsmarts

★★★☆☆

About Friendsmarts

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The initiative behind this class sounds promising: Therapy for socially-challenged kids in a group setting. The therapist can observe the kid in a social setting, instead of one-on-one conversations.

But what sounds like a good idea, is in practice an amateurish and sometime damaging class. The staff place a bunch of kids with problems together. Sometimes you may get lucky, other time, this can leads to a catastrophe. The class material is a joke for middle-school age, so really the effectiveness hinges on the skills of the instructors. However, there is no professional liability, and no standard of conduct they adhere to.

My son had the worst time there. In our session, two out of a group of four quit in the middle. Perhaps we were particularly unlucky, but beware that this can happen. They gave no refund for the lost classes.

My son is now happy and high-functioning socially, after a few months of standard, one-on-one discussions with a therapist. My recommendation to parents is: If your child is experiencing any social or behavioral difficulties, skip Friendsmarts, and go directly the standard route of therapy!

1
★☆☆☆☆

The initiative behind this class sounds promising: Therapy for socially-challenged kids in a group setting. The therapist can observe the kid in a social setting, instead of one-on-one conversations.

But what sounds like a good idea, is in practice an amateurish and sometime damaging class. The staff place a bunch of kids with problems together. Sometimes you may get lucky, other time, this can leads to a catastrophe. The class material is a joke for middle-school age, so really the effectiveness hinges on the skills of the instructors. However, there is no professional liability, and no standard of conduct they adhere to.

My son had the worst time there. In our session, two out of a group of four quit in the middle. Perhaps we were particularly unlucky, but beware that this can happen. They gave no refund for the lost classes.

My son is now happy and high-functioning socially, after a few months of standard, one-on-one discussions with a therapist. My recommendation to parents is: If your child is experiencing any social or behavioral difficulties, skip Friendsmarts, and go directly the standard route of therapy!

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Ginny Strock, PhD, is the founder of Friendsmarts. She is a psychologist who has school-age children in groups of 4 by age. They work on their social skills in a manner of socializing and working on small projects, and receiving a reminder paper at the end of what to do for a given situation. These papers are saved as good reminders, and things the children can practice at home. We as parents know what they worked on for each session. The sessions run for about 4 months.

4
★★★★☆

Ginny Strock, PhD, is the founder of Friendsmarts. She is a psychologist who has school-age children in groups of 4 by age. They work on their social skills in a manner of socializing and working on small projects, and receiving a reminder paper at the end of what to do for a given situation. These papers are saved as good reminders, and things the children can practice at home. We as parents know what they worked on for each session. The sessions run for about 4 months.

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