The number of children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is growing at an alarming rate and parents report social skill deficits as their major concern. SLPs are faced with providing social communication language therapy to this growing population.

The author created this curriculum after verbal attempts to teach the concept of using a “social filter” to students with high-functioning autism. "He/She has no filter" is a common expression for a socially inappropriate or abrasive person. However, the connection between a literal and figurative filter makes little sense to high-functioning ASD students. Research and experience confirm the rote memory skills of children with high-functioning ASD and the workbook capitalizes on this to provide a simple, yet memorable tool for conversation. The F.I.L.T.E.R. curriculum first teaches the literal vs. figurative filter concept and then presents an acronym for connecting the concept to social skills that will help students before, during and after conversation.

F - Facial clues: look for information about how someone is feeling
- Inappropriate: avoid “red light” comments and topics
L - Listen: tune in to the person talking and tune out distractions
T - Target: are you hitting or missing the target in conversation?
E - End the conversation (and start it) at the right time
 - Repair mistakes made in conversation

School-based SLPs and school counselors will find this approach beneficial in explaining and then connecting the conversation filter to critical social skill areas. It provides ease of recall by using an acronym and contains a variety of activities for each social skill area: scenarios, theme-related idioms and expressions, if/then and self-reflection sections, and preview/review questions for each section.

For more information, please visit the website at  Should you have any questions about this curriculum, or if you are interested in scheduling a training, please feel free to contact Stephanie via the website. 


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