Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Human Development & Family Science


This capstone project focused on the social development of kindergarten students receiving special education services who spend a portion of their day in inclusive placements. The number of students receiving special education services in inclusive classroom environments has increased over time. However, special education students often experience social isolation, lack reciprocal friendships, and have limited interactions with peers without disabilities, even in inclusive settings (Avramidis et al., 2018; Koster et al., 2010). Therefore, there is a need to encourage positive interactions between peers with and without disabilities. To address this need, I developed a set of three lessons for special education kindergarten students designed to promote social skills among students with moderate to severe educational disabilities, with an emphasis on Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The first lesson taught youth about socially acceptable strategies for initiating a conversation with another person. The second lesson addressed appropriate physical distance when interacting with others. The third lesson taught students the necessary skills to maintain eye contact. This project was conducted at Ord Terrace Elementary School with children ages five to seven years who receive special education services in inclusive settings.