Thanks to Boston Voyager for the awesome article – click here to read
Director/Owner, Nadine Briggs
Nadine Briggs, Director of Simply Social Kids and managing partner of Social Success Central, LLC (formerly How to Make and Keep Friends, LLC) is a best-selling author and an accomplished social educator. Nadine has dual graduate certifications in Coaching Children & Teens and Coaching Children & Teens with ADHD. She has expertise and certifications in bullying and cyberbullying prevention, Foundations of Positive Psychology including learned optimism and resilience, and sibling relationships (Sibshops). Her training includes collaborative problem solving to teach children conflict resolution and training in child anxiety at the Child Anxiety Network at Boston University. She is certified in the Girl Meets World curriculum which addresses relational aggression in girls and in Cognitive Behavioral Coaching.
Nadine’s oldest child has Down syndrome which was the catalyst for her current career. She also has a son with ADHD. She has a personal passion for helping kids find true friendships. She created Simply Social Kids to provide a sensory-simple, safe, accepting environment for all kids. Her goal is to help kids find true friendship and connectedness.
As Managing Partner Social Success Central (formerly known as How to Make and Keep Friends, LLC), she co-authored the best selling How to Make & Keep Friends: Tips for Kids to Overcome 50 Common Social Challenges, How to Make & Keep Friends: Helping Your Child Achieve Social Success, I Feel Mad! Tips for Kids on Managing Angry Feelings, I Feel Worried! Tips for Kids on Overcoming Anxiety, Tips for Teens on Life and Social Success, I Need to Win! Tips for Kids on Good Sportsmanship and Bully Busting and Managing Meanies: Tips for Kids on Managing Conflict. She is a parent/educator consultant and public speaker. Top 5 character strengths according to the VIA character strengths survey: honestly, humor, love, perspective, and social intelligence.
Social Coach, Jesse Lowe
Jesse Lowe is a seasoned family counselor and educator with extensive experience in social skills instruction with children from preschool to high school. She holds a Masters Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Antioch New England Graduate School and a Bachelors Degree in Human Development and Community Studies from Lesley University. She is a certified Leave No Trace educator through the National Outdoor Leadership School. Jesse is also a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. Jesse has facilitated social skills groups with young children, grade school students, and high school students in a variety of roles, including early childhood educator, school adjustment counselor and family outreach therapist. She has worked at a therapeutic day school for children with different diagnoses that impacted their social development. There she collaborated with their teachers, families and outside providers to bring out their optimal social engagement across environments. A mother of two, Jesse has homeschooled her children, participating in local homeschool cooperatives. She enjoys outdoor adventures, gardening, and taking care of her flock of backyard chickens with her family. Top 5 character strengths according to the VIA character strengths survey: curiosity, bravery, fairness, love of learning, creativity, and ingenuity.
Social Coach, Kellie Flynn
Kellie Flynn is currently a special education preschool teacher for the Westford Public Schools. She previously worked as a preschool teacher, in the special education department and as a first and fourth grade teacher for Westford Public Schools. She has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a Masters in Special Education. Kellie worked her way up from a social coach assistant to social coach due to her ability to connect, and often entertain (this girl can do the floss!) with children and teens of all ages. Top 5 character strengths according to the VIA character strengths survey: Love of Learning, kindness, perspective, prudence, and teamwork.
Office Manager, Social Coach and Manager of Games, Christie Cleaver
Christie Cleaver joined Simply Social Kids in 2013 with a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education from Kent State University. She spent the first part of her career in youth and teen-serving organizations and the last 15 years in disability-focused organizations. In these organizations, she ran middle school after school programs, summer camps and specialty programming, developed character and leadership development curriculum and programs for teens, facilitated social and recreational programming for children, teens, adults and families, developed social skills groups for teens and operated a family support center. Her role at Simply Social Kids is always evolving and she has been integral to our operation in various ways. She is the Office Manager, Social Group Assistant, Manager of Games and has recently accepted the responsibility of Social Coach. Currently, she also teaches Driver Education for Concord Carlisle High School (because she’s definitely crazy). Top 5 character strengths according to the VIA character strengths survey: Gratitude, kindness, humor, honesty and love.
About Simply Social Kids
Simply Social Kids offers social skills groups in an accepting, welcoming environment where kids make social connections and form lasting friendships.
Simply Social Kids programs are successful in coaching ages 8 – 18 skills that are easily generalized into other environments. The proprietary social skills program infuses a combination of proprietary in-the-moment social coaching techniques with proven strategies to coach kids overcome barriers to friendship delivered in an unstructured environment. Children are taught strategies to develop optimism and resiliency while managing anxiety.
Kids who attend Simply Social Kids programs have a great time in the groups and often don’t realize that they’re learning friendship skills. The kids are taught social lessons through game play and fun activities. Parents report social successes at school, playgrounds, with family, and in the community due to skills learned.
Simply Social Kids programs are offered online and when safe to return, at their home-base in Tyngsboro, MA.
Social Resiliency Groups
We coach on social resiliency skills and play games. Our coaches check in with everyone’s social life and monitor during fun/competitive moments. The commitment is month-to-month and runs year round. Schedule an intake to determine if our program is right for your child or teen – click here to book an intake.
Just for Fun Clubs
The clubs are entertainment with light coaching. They are Just for Fun! Click here for complete list of our A to Z Anime to Zombie clubs now enrolling.
Dual Enrollment in Group and Club
Participants who are enrolled in both social groups and clubs get the best of all. Any social challenges that arise during clubs will be addressed by the social coach in the next session. This has proven to be an excellent way to improve social skills.
Nadine Briggs has co-authored the How to Make and Keep Friends book series available on Amazon – How to Make & Keep Friends: Tips for Kids to Overcome 50 Common Social Challenges and How to Make & Keep Friends: Helping Your Child Achieve Social Success, I Feel Mad! Tips for Kids on Managing Angry Feelings, I Feel Worried! Tips for Kids on Overcoming Anxiety, Tips for Teens on Life and Social Success, I Need to Win: Tips for Kids on Good Sportsmanship, and Bully Busting and Managing Meanies: Tips for Kids on Managing Conflict.
Contact Nadine at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-764-2758 for more information. Join our e-newsletter list by texting SIMPLYSOCIALKIDS at 22828.
What families are saying about Simply Social Kids
“I know I won’t be judged if I share my sketchbook at Simply Social Kids. I would never bring it to school.” MR, age 13 – 2020
“I think you have a great place there.” BT – 2020
“Nadine is amazing with ADHD kids and their parents!” LC – 2019
“Perfect place for kids that need a little more time to get social.” KM – 2019
“We love Simply Social Kids!! My 9 year old daughter has been going to Simply Social Kids for almost a year now. Wow, what a difference in her behavior and interactions with her friends and classmates in school! She is making new friends and is learning how to interact better with her current friends. I believe what Simply Social Kids does is instill confidence in our children. Simply Social has given my daughter the coping skills and the knowledge to understand how her actions and words affect other people and vise versa. This is done in a play date type of environment with other kids to put their new found skills to use in a real world type of situation, but in a safe place where there is no judgement. In short, we are very happy to have found Simply Social Kids and are happy to highly recommend them.” CM 2019
“Simply Social Skills is an accepting and fun environment for kids working on their social skills. My son has attended multiple social skills classes/groups and Simply Social is by far the best. Its open and large meeting space has bean bag chairs, air hockey and tons of fun games. Nadine and her staff mix lessons and fun so the kids have a great time, want to learn and most important, WANT to come back! All of the kids make friends (it may not be on their first day) and it is wonderful to see. In addition, there is a back room for parents and siblings to wait, and many times this becomes more of “mom therapy” (or dad or caregiver) where parents share helpful information and make connections themselves. I can’t say enough about Nadine and her staff.” CP – 2018
“Such a warm and inviting environment. My daughter looks forward to coming every week. She has made some special bonds with the peers in her group. I love that Nadine comes in at the end of each meeting, and keeps open communication with the parents as to what they focus on the group was each week.I’ve noticed tremendous growth with my daughter since we started going, and I would recommend it in a heartbeat.” JP – 2017
“Dear Nadine and Simply Social staff, Thank you for having such a great service for families and kids who desperately need it. B grew so much due to your weekly groups, meetings, seminars and you were all so generous and kind to him. He now gets all A’s in school, works out a Best Fitness every day after school by himself. You gave him the courage and confidence he so desperately needed and wanted. I still do and will continue to advocate for Simply Social on a daily basis.” Your friend, BC, 2017
“I would like to thank Norah for not only a wonderful job with the teen girls group but for personally getting in to touch with my daughter. At the beginning of the group, she thought it was a punishment to have to do activities with other kids, now I have to say no to her endless wants for friends over. It is a welcome change! I definitely could see confidence in herself emerge as the months went on. I definitely think that she was given tools to use in everyday life that was presented in a non-threatening and non-bias way. There is always room for growth and I’m sure that my daughter will look back on her experience at simply social kids as a pivotal point in her ability to feel confident in relationships. Also did I forget to mention that she found a great friend at the social club? Well she did!” My appreciation, KC, 2016
“To watch our son make friends and continually have trouble keeping them was heartbreaking. He lacked the skill to react and respond to certain situations that resulted in him losing relationships. He needed more than just someone telling him how to react…he had to experience it. This is what Simply Social Kids has done for him. Nadine and her Staff bring these kids in and teach them the skills they need in an environment that is fun and positive. While working things out with the instructors these kids are learning from each other too. Our son has flourished with these classes and has made such amazing progress. We could see that these interactions, discussions and play time were making a difference in him. He is now in High School and the friendships he has made are strong. Nadine, to you and your staff we say thank you for everything you’ve done.” – JC, 2016
“My son, a third year post-secondary student, has been attending one-on-one weekly sessions with Jesse Lowe since the beginning of January 2016. He was struggling with reading nonverbal cues and engaging in social interactions in the classroom and with his professors and friends. Jesse has been amazing at coaching him and I have noticed a huge improvement in his interactions with others when we go to the grocery store and the bank and when socializing with family and friends. He has told me that he feels more confident participating in classroom discussions and group projects and when talking with his professors. He recently attended some job interviews for summer employment and said he felt confident and sure of himself during these interviews. I highly recommend Simply Social Kids for post-secondary students.” – CC, 2016
“I still remember Kevin’s first day here like it was yesterday. As Joshua and I walked Kevin to the car he said, ‘I had SO much fun Mom, those kids are just like me.’ This ran chills down my back and brought tears to my eyes. The feelings of being an outsider live within all of us, especially when we’re young, but Kevin seemed to connect with so few of his peers at school, that having a room full of those that felt ‘just like him’ was more than comforting. Thank you so much for all you have done, and what you continue to do, not just for my son, but for all the children who attend your center. It really is a life-changer.” – KB
“When I come here, it’s not just to see my friends, these guys are like my family.” – K , age 11
“Simply Social Kids is one of the best things I have ever done for my kids. My son looks forward to “group” every week where he has made great new friends who understand him and accept him and who encourage him. Under the guidance of Nadine and Norah, the kids all help each other learn to read social cues and make good social choices, as well as things like how to handle anxiety and stress. These kids “get” each other. I have watched my son blossom socially over the last couple of months and being a part of this has helped him in the process of learning to truly like himself. It has helped him see how amazing he really is and nothing is more valuable than that.” – JW
“Love simply social, my son has been going for about two months now and has already made improvements in his social skills. Director is amazing and really takes the time to understand each child and their specific needs!” – CL
“Nadine, we are completely amazed by how much Kylie has grown over the last few months, and we have to give you credit. The group environment has changed her from the little, soft spoken girl to a confident and proud little girl! I wish I had taken a video of her presenting to show you, but we really capitalized on her strengths (as you pointed out one day) and her whole demeanor has changed. Thank you so much for your program and your guidance on the little things!” -JB
“Carol always enjoys spending time in your groups. She feels very safe at SSK. Calming and coping has been particularly beneficial. We are always looking for new ways to help ease the anxieties felt in everyday life. After the session on meditating she felt so much better. The next day I saw her actually applying what she learned. It’s been great for me, too!” -CW
“I’m telling you the group was great. The lady was great. The CD and care package they got at this week’s group was great. Freddie really likes it and he’s getting a lot out of it. He’s a different kid thanks to it. No counseling and getting out there in a group and all the things that you promise at Simply Social does so it’s been really great for him and I can’t thank you enough. He got a whole lot out of it. I mean better than any summer camp he’s ever been in or anything like that. Simply Social has been it as far as he goes so I just wanted to let you know. Keep up the great work that you do.” -BC
“Hi Nadine, Bobby loves going to Fridays group. He looks forward to it every week. He loves listening and participating in new, helpful coping strategies every week. The group will be missed when the class is over. Bobby enjoys both groups including the fact that he meets up with different friends from each group. Bobby continues to love going to simply social kids every week and lets us know all the time how much he likes the staff, kids and volunteers. Bobby also enjoys Skype chatting at least once a week with various friends from group. The conversation can sometimes last a couple of hours. Thanks again Nadine for the ultimate gift.” -BC
“I appreciate all your help. You are truly a gem and I’m so very glad we have you in our lives.” -HW
“Wow. In one sentence you changed everything. ‘Even if you could make everything better, that wouldn’t prepare Hector for the real world…’ I am going to recite that to myself every day. You are more than correct. And it applies to SO many things. Thank you.” TL
“We would like to take a moment and thank the staff at Simply Social Kids. For all of their hard work and dedication and the development of the programs that make such a difference. Our daughter enjoys going to group so much it has truly helped her with her social skills in a comfortable atmosphere that is fun, judgment free, friendly and comfortable. She absolutely loves it. Thank you for making a difference in our child’s life.” – DT