Social Skills: Teaching Complimenting

Wanna hear a dirty little secret from my classroom? I prompt my kids to compliment me. I know. I sound vain. And as much as I love hearing endless compliments about my new purple sweater from 14 year old boys, as always, there is method to the madness. And don’t worry – the compliments aren’t just for me. I prompt them to compliment everyone. Because honestly, what is a better social skill to fast track to friendship than a compliment? Haven’t you ever been at a party where you don’t know to many people and before you collapse into awkwardness, you beeline for the chica in the cutest pair of stilettos and dish a few niceties? Come on. We’ve all been there. So I’m teaching my kids to butt kiss… just a bit.

I love this visual for a lot of reasons – because my nonverbal students can use it, because it incorporates color identification, because it involves clothes vocabulary, and it’s moveable!



I put this in my students binder and we use it as structured social interaction during morning group each day. On the first half the page the student will pick a classmate or teacher to compliment (see I’m fair!). Then they need to identify the colors of the person’s clothing:



(don’t worry – this was a setup – I wasn’t wearing an orange shirt and pink pants…)

Then they take off the velcro conversation strip and hand it to the person. This is wear we can squeeze in as much social skill building as my preteen divas can handle. We work on finding the person (because the person they choose may be somewhere else in the room), appropriately interrupting the person, looking towards the person, (if they have verbal skills) saying the compliment out load, etc.


The whole process is super cute, I must say. I love my little darlings complimenting each other. And I think you all look nice today too 😉

The Autism Helper - Complimenting Visual



  1. Do you have the combination boards for compliments in your store?

  2. I love this. We are working on accepting compliments as well.

  3. Thanks 🙂



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