What Makes COF Unique?

Socialization

All our programming is centered on socialization and finding ways to encourage and support our participants as they develop relationships with one another.   Activities are supported visually and scripts are available to aide in the development of conversation skills.  

As friendships continue to grow, we are committed to finding new ways to encourage and support our participants as they develop relationships with one another. Our conversation format during meal and snack times helps develop new conversation skills by providing visual scripts, topics and questions.

Social Jobs are another way to advance independence and foster socialization between participants.  At the beginning of each day, participants chose at least one social job which may include:

  • Discussion Leader
  • Warm Up Leader
  • Game Leader
  • Feel Good Helper
  • Exercise Helper

Social Trivia

What is Social Trivia? It is an opportunity for our participants to navigate through social norms in a fun and engaging way through a series of questions.  Here are some examples! (1) What do you do if someone has bad breath? (2) What do you do if someone posts something mean online? (3) What do you do if what you ordered at a restaurant is wrong?

Social Trivia---Bad Breath
Social Trivia---Bad Breath
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As a way of keeping us informed of upcoming special events or occasions, a “What’s Happening at Home?” form is available for participants and families to fill out.  Once returned, participants are encouraged to share their “news” and celebrate their amazing accomplishments with their friends at COF, (forms can be found under the Participant Forms tab).

Supports

We offer a wide variety of individualized supports, (both written and visual), to help our participants remain engaged and organized. Supports include schedules, sequential “steps, (recipes, job tasks), as well as behavior supports, (Expected/Unexpected).

Ratios

We operate primarily as a 3 participant to 1 staff or volunteer, but do offer more individualized, assigned support when needed. Our 3 hour section size remains small, (capping at either 4, 6 or 9 participants depending on which day), allowing all our participants to benefit.

After School Programming

While typical peers have the opportunity to join a variety of after school clubs and activities, these options are limited for special needs students. We offer programming beginning at 3:00 pm Monday through Thursday.

Post Transition Programming

Once transition is completed, Connection of Friends reinforces the many skills acquired including life skills, cooking skills, technology skills, volunteering skills as well as navigating within the community.

Dinner & Dancing with Friends

Held on Monday from 3-6:00 pm, Dinner & Dancing focuses on the preparation and eating of an evening meal.  Participants not only prepare dinner, but continue to work on a variety of life skill activities including setting the table, manners, table conversation and cleaning up. Past dinners have included Shepherd’s Pie, Lasagna Primavera, Minestrone Soup and Pizza Casserole.

Saturday Night Programming

We offer theme based Saturday Night Socials from 6:00-9:00 pm every Saturday night which includes dinner and dessert!

Constant Communication

Connection of Friends is committed to supporting our participants so they can successfully navigate the variety of activities offered during programming. Staff speaks to families regularly to not only share successes, but to actively problem solve any challenges seen during programming.