Friday, April 4, 2014

At School - Social Story

A social story  according to Wikipedia, is "a tool to help individuals on the autism spectrum better understand the nuances of interpersonal communication so that they could interact in an effective and appropriate manner."

I have used social stories in various manners with children along the spectrum as well as with "normal" children.  Why? Because it is an effective tool to teach and show expectations.  

If you have ever taught kindergarten, you understand that we spend a great deal of our day modeling and teaching expectations.  A social story is just another support; usually a visual support to explicitly show what you expect.

For example, in the beginning of the year, our kindergarten children were having difficulty keeping our restrooms clean. Each teacher had talked about the expectations, but the behaviors did not improve until a visual support and modeling was provided and taught.

This was especially true for my friend who needed a reminder each and every time he went to the restroom.  It was right there for him.  All I had to do was remind him verbally, "In the bathroom, I pee in the toilet."  He would return, happily reporting that he peed in the toilet.  I would congratulate him and reward him with a PBIS reward.  Eventually, he stopped needing that verbal support and reward but the visual is still there for him and others.



Sometimes it is hard for some children to understand the expectations of a school/classroom setting. This can be true for children who have never been to school or for the child who may need more explicit modeling. I created this Social Story to to teach classroom expectations.  The language is easy enough to be read independently but the pictures explicitly shows my expectations.  


I used this with all my students at the beginning of the year.  It was our shared reading story the first week of school.  At the end of the week, each child was able to read it and understand for the most part what are our classroom expectations. Eventually, the children took it home, except for the child who still needs it.  It continues to be in his book box so that we can review it if I notice a behavior needs review or after a long break.  The book is a reinforcer of the positive behaviors that I expect in my classroom.  It has helped him be more independent as well as helped me teach more effectively.  A win-win for all of us!

I am not an expert, just a teacher, who wants each child in my classroom to be as successful as possible. I've also use this paid site to create more specific social stories. If you would like to learn more about social stories go here.

I hope you enjoy this freebie and consider leaving a comment or following me on Bloglovin'.

Lastly, stop by Melondheadz Illustrating to get this adorable clip art set in honor of Autism Awareness month.

Happy Teaching!

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1 comment:

  1. But you ARE an expert ... because you know and love kids ... and want them to succeed. I love your work and am inspired by your heartbeat for children!

    Barbara

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