Kimochis for Children with Special Needs
Through practice activities, games and role-plays, the Kimochis can help children with autism spectrum disorders and other social-cognitive deficits learn to identify and regulate feelings, understand the emotions and perspectives of others, and establish and maintain healthy social relationships.
AblePlayTM is a toy rating system and website that provides comprehensive information on toys for children with special needs. AblePlay was created so parents, special educators, therapists and others can make the best decisions when purchasing products for children in their lives with disabilities. See the detailed Kimochis Report from AblePlay (printable version here).
Kimochis Downloadables with specific tools for children with social emotional challenges are available.
Lessons in the Kimochis curriculum focus on teaching general social skills (initiating, turn-taking, using appropriate tone of voice and body language); friendship skills (turn-taking, apologizing for and redoing hurtful exchanges); conflict resolution (accepting “no,” agreeing to disagree); and resilience (working through upset moments, developing a “can-do” attitude). The Kimochis Keys to Communication are the foundation of the program. These explicit and easy-to-remember communication tools teach children how to listen, speak and act in ways that support positive behavioral choices in all social situations. Children can easily identify with the Kimochis characters making learning accessible and fun. A common language used by children, teachers, and peers allows intervention to occur throughout the day by taking advantage of teachable moments as they occur. Specific strategies for children with social emotional challenges accompany each lesson in the elementary curriculum and promote the development of positive life skills for children in inclusive, resource and Special Day classes (mild-moderate). Suggestions include visual supports, social narratives, language enhancements, and learning accommodations. See page 59 of our elementary curriculum for more information.
The Kimochis characters remind children and teachers that at times, we might have different moods, opinions, ideas, likes, dislikes, hopes and dreams. Because we are different, we have to learn how to work together, express ourselves as individuals and as a group, and communicate the best we can with compassion and kindness.
“The Kimochis curriculum is an engaging and interactive program which addresses the language of emotions and strategies to communicate and deal with feelings. It has proven to be very appealing to many of our students who have enjoyed and related to the characters.” — Sara Jones, M.S., CCC-SLP, Supervisor, Speech Department, Speech and Language Development Center