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Once you have an idea of what they “get,” use it to help paint a picture of the social concept you are trying to teach.  For example, my client needed some more work on understanding the development of social relationships/friendships.  So, I took my white board, and I tried to make it into a mathematical equation.  I talked with him about my concept of s3 (S-cubed).  “s3”?, he said.  “Tell me more about this.”  So I went on to talk about what s3 was and wrote this equation on the board:

Friendship Math Equation
As I explained, he sat on the couch nodding his head and gave me feedback on what I was saying. I got him interested and I was able to plug into the part of his brain that he uses to make sense of the world.  So I kept going to describe this new “equation” I have been exploring to teach about social relationships.  I had him hooked!

Knowing what your student or client really “gets” may take some time, but it will definitely help them to understand more about the social concept you are describing.  Everyone enjoys to talk about and learn about their interests and expertise, so why not tailor learning about “social” to what they use to make sense of the world around them?

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