Category Archives: Free Community Service Seminar

How to help your special needs child build better social skills

How to build better social skills with your special needs child

For children with learning and thinking differences, making connections with others can be difficult.

As parents and teachers, it can be worrying to watch a child a child we care about struggle, because we know that friendships and feelings of belonging are vital to our kids’ learning, development and well-being.

If your child, or a child you work with…

  • Feels anxious in social situations
  • Has trouble ‘reading’ other people’s facial expressions or body language
  • Is a poor listener and frequently interrupts when others are speaking
  • Monopolizes conversations or goes off-topic a lot
  • Doesn’t notice when other kids reject or don’t want to play with them
  • Is overly literal and doesn’t ‘get’ hidden meanings
  • Is a ‘playground police officer’ who enforces‘the rules’ and prevents other kids from enjoying spontaneous play
  • Struggles to take turns in a game
  • Can’t cope with losing or not being first
  • Finds it hard to remember what to say or how to behave in social settings

… join us for this special event presented by Special Educator Kirsty Gale and teacher and best-selling author, Sonja Walker.

With decades of experience between them, Sonja and Kristy will share simple strategies to give your special needs child a better chance to enjoy happy, positive relationships.


Kirsty Gale - Early Learning Support Specialist at Kids First Children's Services

With a Masters’ Degree in Special Education and more than 20 years of classroom and playground experience, Kirsty Gale understands how children with unique needs learn and interact. Kirsty is the leader of Kids First’s Early Learning Support Specialist team. She works closely with parents and teachers to help kids with unique needs to thrive and not just cope at home, preschool and school. She also coordinates Kids First’s Social Skills Groups for children aged 4-12.

Sonja Walker - teacher, author and founder of Kids First Children's Services

Teacher and Kids First founder Sonja Walker is passionate about supporting children with special needs and their families. The author of best-selling book, SCHOOL READY: A Practical and Supportive Guide for Parents with Sensitive Kids, Sonja is a sought after speaker who is known for her practical, down to earth approach to helping kids to thrive and not just cope.

Who is this event for?

This event is best suited to parents, carers and teachers of children with unique learning, thinking and social needs. It may be helpful for the families of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD and sensory processing difficulties, as well as mild intellectual delays.

Event Details

Date:        Tuesday, 3 December 2019
Time:        7.30pm to 9.30pm
Venue:      The Chairman’s Club, Brookvale Oval

The Chairman’s Clubis located in the Ken Arthurson stand on the first floor of the Brookvale Oval stadium complex. Entry is via the stairs near the main gate located on Alfred Street, Brookvale. Parking is available in the Brookvale Oval complex and in neighbouring streets.

Your respect for our cancellation policy (detailed below) is appreciated.


Free places at Kids First Community Service Seminars are reserved on a first-come, first served basis and due to the heavy expected demand for this event, bookings are essential.

This will be the only presentation of this seminar for 2019.

Cancellation Policy

If you book a place and fail to attend this event, another family may miss out on the opportunity to participate. Should your plans change, please inform us of your change of circumstances at least 24 hours prior to the event. Kids First reserves the right to wait-list guests who have held bookings for free Community Service Seminars in the past and have, without notice, failed to attend.

Book your ticket for this Kids First Community Service Seminar here

Free parent event: How to manage mean kids and playground politics 

Is making and keeping friends a minefield for your child? Does your child struggle because of: Conflict with other kids? ‘Best friend’ issues? Social isolation? Difficulties with joining a game or fitting in? Exclusion from groups? Don’t miss this valuable free presentation by experienced Psychologist Louella Covich. At this important parent seminar, Louella will explain… Continue Reading

Happy Kids, Happy Families: How to raise resilient kids in today’s world

This event is now BOOKED OUT See below for wait-list opportunities Has the fun has gone out of your family? Is being a parent harder than you thought it would be? Do you spend more time worrying about your children’s struggles than celebrating their strengths? Are you concerned about: Frequently raised voices? Problem behaviours that… Continue Reading

Free Event: How to Help Your Child Make and Keep Friends

Does your child: Have trouble fitting in with other kids? Struggle to meet like-minded mates? Feel excluded by friendship groups Miss the social cues that other children send? Find it hard to compromise or follow the rules of games? Feel lonely after starting at a new school? Have conflict with peers because of their need… Continue Reading

How to help your child make a successful start to school

Is your child ready to make a happy, confident start to ‘big school’ next year? Going to school is a big step for little kids, and there are many skills that they need to have mastered in order to make the best possible start to Kindergarten. Although your son or daughter may be old enough to… Continue Reading

Free Parent Seminar: How to help your preschooler learn to talk, listen and play in a positive way

Have you noticed that your child… Has a smaller vocabulary that peers of the same age? Mispronounces sounds and words? Uses ‘baby talk’ that is immature for their age? Pinches, bites or hit other children instead of ‘using their words’? Seems to not hear (or remember) what people say to them? Finds it hard to… Continue Reading

Free parent seminar: How to support your sensitive child

  Is your child a ‘deep thinker’ who: Asks lots of questions? Has intense emotional reactions to people, places and things? Feels criticism, defeat and the distress of others deeply. Enjoys quiet play more than big and noisy groups? Actively avoids situations they find upsetting or overwhelming? Becomes easily overwhelmed by such things as bright… Continue Reading

Free training for Early Educators – Communicating with Care

  Many early educators tell us that one of the most challenging aspects of their work is broaching the subject of a child’s difficulties with parents and carers. It’s never easy to talk with parents about your concerns for their child, and sometimes, educators don’t quite know how to approach a parent for fear of… Continue Reading

Free Event: How to Feed Your Fussy Eater

 Are meal-times a mess for your family? Do you find yourself: Arguing with your children? Doing ‘deals’ to get them to eat? Wasting time, effort and money on dishes that don’t get eaten? Worrying that your child’s nutrition is compromised? Concerned that your child’s picky eating is stopping them from enjoying parties and outings that… Continue Reading

Free Event: How to Help Your Child Become a Better Reader

Does your child struggle with any of these skills? Rhyming Reading unfamiliar words (and so guesses instead) Sounding words out Blending sounds together Reading aloud Remembering the alphabet, basic Maths and days of the week Spelling Pronouncing words (e.g. says ‘mawn lower’ instead of ‘lawn mower’) Learning new skills (compensates by relying on memorization) Remembering facts and numbers… Continue Reading