Archive for the ‘autistic kids’ Category

Autism Visual Supports

Monday, July 4th, 2011

Commonly the vast majority of children with autism WILL struggle with the everyday tasks and skills that a typically developing individual will have NO PROBLEMS with, like for example making friends, asking questions appropriately, joining in play and so on.

It’s mainly due to the individuals social skills deficits which ARE common to ALL with Autism Spectrum Disorder and in many cases sensory processing issues that many children with autism have difficulties with otherwise “normal” skills and behaviours.

It is therefore recommended that using autism visual supports CAN be beneficial. Autism visual supports are designed specifically to help overcome some of the difficulties many children and young people with autism face daily.

Recent autism treatment research suggests that autism visual supports like visual support cards, social stories, PECS communication boards and visual schedules all HAVE a large part to play in the treatment and development of social and communication skills for many autistic kids.

Parents CAN NOW find sites offering autism visual supports which ARE run by parents and professionals that offer support and other autistic resources.

Sites which offer autistic resources can be found easily using search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing and through Directories.

The World CAN be a very confusing place to a child on the spectrum,   many of the everyday skills we take for granted  a child with autism CAN FIND difficult and stressful.

Typically many families with an autistic child can find even supposedly fun activities like visiting relatives, a trip to the shop, supermarket, buying new clothes can be difficult when you have a child on the autism spectrum.

Help, is what most families with an autistic child need as well as trusted supports that have been proven to work.  

Help such as social stories ARE beneficial. What are social stories?

Probably the most significant autism visual supports ARE social stories. A social story is much like a role model or visual plan used to describe a skill or situation in terms of relevant social cues and prompts.

Today social stories are EASY TO IMPLEMENT need no formal training to use and can be edited to suit all terminology and autistic kids no matter where on the spectrum scale they fall.

As one of the major autistic resources used to help teach, support and HELP individuals with autism to overcome social skills deficits social skills stories ARE available to download TODAY from sites like

A social skills story will answer the important “wh” questions –  who, where, why, when and what as well as “HOW” and give an insight into the thoughts, emotions and nonverbal communications of others helping the autistic child get a handle on the skill or situation which can reduce tantrums, meltdowns and general stress for everyone.

So for example if the family want to visit Granny introducing a social skills story can help describe to the child with autism exactly what to expect reducing anxiety and what is expected of them reducing stress. The social skills story is editable, can be personalized, printed for convenience and is portable so can be popped into a bag making it an ideal autistic support.

Sites which offer IMMEDIATE ACCESS to autism visual supports like social stories and visual support cards for a minimal fee like:  are run by experts, offer social stories and support to families and individuals with autism.

ASD in children

Friday, June 10th, 2011

ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is a neurological disorder which affects more boys than girls. Generally ASD is diagnosed before a child reaches three years of age.

ASD in children will typically affect how the child interacts, behaves and communicates with others. This is commonly known as the Triad of Autistic Impairments or social skills deficits and will affect all children with an ASD, in varying degrees.

The Triad of Autistic Impairments are typical to Autism Spectrum Disorder and can be treated with intervention strategies designed to help children with an ASD overcome their social skills deficits.

Intervention strategies like social skills stories, PECS and visual support cards are commonly used to help the ASD child understand and cope with situations and skills that they are struggling with or find stressful, like for example recess, asking questions and making friends.

Social stories were first introduced around twenty years ago by therapist Carol Grey as a means of communication with the children she was working.

Social skills stories comprise of four sentence types; Perspective, Directive, Descriptive and control and will generally follow a set formula.

Typically for the ASD child social skills stories answer the “wh” questions – who, where, why, when and what as well as “HOW” and give an insight into the thoughts and feelings of others which is an area of marked weakness in children with an ASD.

No two autistic kids will ever be the same, and we all use different terminology, therefore most social skills stories are written in word format which means that they are easy to edit.

Generally most autistic kids are visual thinkers and learners, which means that they think in pictures. It is therefore important to use visual supports like social skills stories, PECS and visual support cards.

ASD in children is not cure-able but by using visual supports like social skills stories YOU will find teaching an ASD child social skills can be considerably improved.

Social skills stories use first person text and visual images in a manner that all kids with autism will find easy to understand. A social skills story can act as a role model or visual step by step plan.

Parents, caregivers, teachers and assistants can use any social skills story without any formal training. They can be downloaded, edited, printed and implemented easily and for most situations and skills the child is struggling with.

To learn more teaching an ASD child social skills using social stories visit: where you will find social stories to download.


Teaching autistic kids social skills

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Children with autism spectrum disorder have difficulties with social interactions. While typically developing children learn social skills naturally autistic kids do not. And will need special techniques to learn social skills.

Teaching autistic kids social skills can be done using visual intervention strategies and techniques.

Probably one of the major issues for autistic kids are their deficits in social and communication skills and often their understanding of self and those people around them is different from typically developing people.

It is often said that children on the autism spectrum appear to be locked in their own world and not interested in interacting with others. This can cause problems when the child is attending mainstream education. However there are techniques and strategies – visual intervention strategies – which can be used for teaching autistic kids social skills.

One of the major visual intervention strategies is social stories. Developed almost twenty years ago by therapist Carol Gray to help aid communication with the children on the autism spectrum she was working with, social stories have grown into one of the best and most used strategies for developing social and communications skills in children on the spectrum.

Social stories are short visual descriptive pieces of text that use visual images to describe a social situation or skill in terms of the relevant social cues.


Children with autism spectrum disorder are generally visual thinkers and learners, which means they think in pictures, making visual strategies ideal tools. Images are a powerful means of communication that are universally understood by all, social stories use this concept much like a comic strip script that children on the autism spectrum can better understand.

Social skills stories break the skill or situation down into small sections “social cues” and answer the “wh” questions – who, where, why, when and what as well as “HOW” and give an insight into the thoughts, feelings and emotions of others.

By implementing social skills stories parents, care givers and teachers can help with teaching autistic kids social skills which can help with transitions, changes to routines, learning new skills, encouraging already learnt skills, hygiene issues and much more.

To download social skills stories that are used for teaching autistic kids social skills visit:

Or any of the following sites where you will find appropriate social skills stories

Social stories for autistic kids

Monday, November 15th, 2010

Deficits with social skills are common to autism. This means for many autistic kids problems with social interactions, communication difficulties and a distinct lack of imaginative skills. And unlike their typically developing peers the natural ability to “read people” and learn appropriate and essential life skills is missing meaning these skills are needed to be taught directly.


Therefore intervention strategies ARE implemented to help parents, care givers, teachers and other professionals teach and encourage their child on the spectrum to learn and use appropriate social, communication and imagination skills and behaviours.


Also common to autism are sensory processing issues, meaning the child on the spectrum may be either hyper or hypo sensitive and need help with this problem.


Social stories for autistic kids are used to help address deficits with social, communication and imagination skills and help with sensory processing issues.


Using intervention strategies like social stories has proven effective in many cases and is now one of the major autism resources used for helping autistic kids.


Social skills stories ARE short descriptive almost comic script like stories, using visual images to tell the child with autism how to deal with a certain situation or skill that they are struggling with.


For example tooth brushing, for many autistic kids this skill is difficult to master, the cold water, feel of the tooth brush and taste of the tooth paste can in many cases, due to sensory processing issues cause discomfort, anxiety and stress.


By implementing social skills stories you can show your child with autism the consequence of not brushing as well as the positive affects of brushing as well as explain the “wh” questions – who, where, why, when and what and give an insight into the thoughts feelings and emotions of others as well as what’s  involved in and with this skill.


The vast majority of children with an ASD are visual thinkers and learners, meaning they think in pictures, this makes social stories an ideal intervention strategy as the stories are visual using images and pictures.


Social stories for autistic kids use visual images to show the skill, by breaking it into smaller sections, using first person language, following a set formula and in a manner the child on the spectrum will be able to understand.


Most social stories are editable, this is because no two children with an ASD are ever the same and we all use different terminology with our children, therefore parents or teachers are able to edit the social skills story to make the terminology relevant and personalize if this is needed.


Social stories for autistic kids can act as a role model or visual plan helping to teach the child with autism. Social stories can also be used to help with transitions, changes to routines, events, activities and inappropriate behaviours.


To learn more bout how a social skills story could help your child with autism address deficits in social, communication and imagination skills visit any of the following sites:

What are the physical characteristics of autism?

Thursday, October 15th, 2009

There are not any outward physical characteristics of autism, you would probably not be able to look at a person and immediately notice that he or she is autistic?

That is until you try to communicate with that person. Generally, the first sign that a person is autistic is when he speaks or when he won’t make eye contact.


Maybe some of the physical characteristics of autism could be classified as repetitive or stereotypical movements, for example finger flicking, hitting their desks, or tapping a pencils.


While these actions in themselves aren’t an indication of autism, if the action is repetitive to the point of annoyance for those around them, with the person being oblivious to the irritation they have become to others.

Some of the more common signs of autism are:


* Poor upper body strength

* Low facial muscle tone

* Sometimes pale skin

* Repetitive stereotypical movements, such as head banging, finger   flicking, rocking etc.

* Impaired motor skills (motor and fine)


Research continues into this complex disorder, there are some rough guidelines established for identifying the physical characteristics and behaviors that could indicate the possibility of autism.


These are by no means complete lists and in all cases if autism is suspected a diagnosis of autism should be sought from a professional such as the child’s G.P. who will be able to advise you on the possibility of autism and refer you on to a specialist.


Other signs of autism in preschool children can include:

  • Shying away from physical closeness or cuddles
  • Treating people in the same manner as objects
  • Either lack of crying or excessive crying
  • Repetitive stereotypical movements or obsessive play with one item or toy
  • The need for routine without exception


After a diagnosis of autism there are specific treatments that can help with the symptoms of autism such as lack of verbal and non-verbal communication skills and social, imagination and interaction skills deficits.


One treatments used for almost twenty years by parents of autistic kids is social stories. Designed by therapist Carol Gray they were first introduced to help parents of autistic kids and professionals involved with the care and well being of autistic children to teach them appropriate social skills and behaviors.

Since there first introduction social stories have evolved into one of the major tools used for teaching social, communication, imagination and interaction skills to autistic children. They use visual representations and appropriate text to describe in detail giving key focus to the social cues the autistic child needs to learn the skill or behavior being mastered.


Parents of autistic kids and professionals such as teachers use social stories widely to help autistic children find clarity, learn and re-enforce vital, everyday and occasional skills they struggle to master or understand.


For example, tooth brushing, using the toilet or learning what is death, birth, a wedding or other skills such as claming down, asking questions and making friends.

To understand more about how social stories can help alleviate the symptoms of autism associated with the physical characteristics and behaviors of autism and develop vital social and communication skills for your autistic child visit one of the following sites:

Halloween for children with autism spectrum disorder

Monday, October 5th, 2009

There are various ways you can prepare your child with autism for Halloween.

Halloween for children with autism spectrum disorder need not be a dreadful experience. For most typically developing children Halloween is a great amount of fun. However for some autistic children and their families Halloween can be an awful experience.


Tips for autism and Halloween:


The first and probably most important thing to consider is the autism sensory processing issues associated with Halloween.


For example if your child with autism suffers from autism sensory processing issues in any of the senses these should be addressed. Some autistic kids may find their costume itchy, the excessive candy a lot of autistic kids are on special diets and may not be allowed candy. Noise will be an issue, ringing door bells and shrieking children.


However with some careful forward planning you can prepare your child with autism for Halloween. This can be done using social skills stories.


A few things need to be taken into account when thinking about Halloween for children with autism spectrum disorder like road safety, staying with an adult and practicing the trick or treat conversation.


All these skills can be practiced before Halloween using social skills stories to help your child understand what will be expected of them at Halloween and what they can expect from others.

To download social skills stories for autistic children at Halloween. Plus tips for autism Halloween visit:


Get support and social skills stories for autistic children at Halloween to help you prepare your child with autism for Halloween.



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Autism visual supports social story touch

Thursday, September 17th, 2009

Autism is a pervasive developmental disorder which causes impairments in the way individual’s process information.


Autism is characterized by social, communication, imagination and interaction skills deficits which are often referred to as autistic social skills deficits.

Generally all autistic individuals will have difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions. Autism spectrum disorder can make it difficult for autistic individuals to communicate with others and relate to the outside world. In some cases, aggressive and/or self-injuries behavior may be present.


Autistic individuals may also experience sensory sensitivities in the five senses of sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste.


Generally autistic children and adults tend to be hyper-sensitive or hypo-sensitive.


Deficits in autistic sensory sensitivities: Touch, autistic children may have difficulties in discriminating between objects by touch alone, for example they may be unable to locate an object even if it is in their own pocket.


Sometimes autistic children will have a high threshold for pain and may injure themselves without realizing they have done so, which can be quite alarming for parents.

Some autistic children will appear clumsy and have poor body awareness which can make them bump into objects and people. Sometimes they may fall down a lot. They may use too much or not enough force when pushing, pulling, lifting or holding on to things even people!


They may have poor gross motor movements and poor upper body muscle strength. Some autistic individuals will have difficulties with fine motor skills they will struggle to hold coins or use a zip.


Some autistic toddlers can be confused and interpret their mother’s body as part of their own.


Some autistic children are sensitive to the feel of certain fabrics and substances they will dislike the tags in their clothes, as well as being touched etc.


These are all commonly reported autistic sensory sensitivities issues by parents of autistic children.


Parents of autistic children report significant autistic social skills deficits in touch with their autistic children. Social skills stories have been used as a means of helping those individuals with autism that have sensory sensitivities issues find ways of coping with the affects of sensory dysfunctions appropriately.


Social skills stories can be used for issues with touch for example an autistic child may be unaware of their own personal and other people’s personal space and insist on standing too close to other people, which can make others feel very uncomfortable using a social story in this situation can be very beneficial.


A social story for touch, for example appropriate touching, when it is ok to touch and not ok to touch for example keeping hands to your self and so on.


Also, social story touch for sniffing someone’s hair, hitting, dentist and so on all useful for autistic kids with sensory issues.


Social stories are widely used by parents of autistic children, teachers and other professionals to help teach and re-enforce essential and daily life social, communication, interaction and imagination skills to children with autism.

To get immediate downloads of various social skills stories for example social story for touch visit sites such as: or

And gain immediate downloads of social skills stories for children with autism like appropriate touching, personal space and lots more autistic kids benefit from the implementation of social stories.

Children with autistic spectrum disorder and sensory issues

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

Sensory issues are common in children with autistic spectrum disorder. Generally children with autistic spectrum disorder have sensory issues, which can make them either highly sensitive or under responsive to sensory stimulation such as sound, light, smell, taste and touch as well as other stimulation through their senses.

Sensory issues can take different forms and will vary between children for example: some children with autistic spectrum disorder may overreact and become anxious, scared even experience pain at certain sounds for example a bell (like the ring of the telephone) or siren, but will talk very loudly when speaking with other people.


Children with autistic spectrum disorder and sensory issues may sometimes object to certain materials like rough-textured clothing on their skin or labels on the inside their clothes.


Sometimes children with autistic spectrum disorder and sensory issues may only want to eat certain foods and may dislike certain textures of foods.


Some children with autistic spectrum disorder and sensory issues can tolerate hugging but will become irritated and defensive when touched softly. This is sometimes referred to as “tactile defensiveness” which can make this set of autistic children appear disinterested in other people even their own parents, physical contact can make this set of autistic children irritated rather than consoled.


Generally all autistic children will have some form of sensory issue, parents can now make a difference to their child’s behavior using something called social skills stories.


For example some autistic kids are sensitive to sound, as shown above. Teachers have reported some autistic kids fear fire drills (sound) and that using social skills stories; for fire drills has been a huge bonus, helping keep autistic children calm, explaining to them what the fire alarm is why it is used and appropriate behaviors expected of them when the fire drill sounds.


Social skills stories are used for a wide range of sensory issues that affect autistic children both in the home and at school. Parents and teachers report significant improvements in autistic sensory issues once social skills stories are introduced.


Social skills stories are generally written by experts and are visually rich, as autistic kids tend to be visual learners and will respond better to visual supports and cues. They will always use first person appropriate language and will follow focus on the key points being addressed by the social skills story.

There are many sites on the internet offering parents and teacher the opportunity to download social skills stories to help with autistic sensory issues, one such site with stories such as fire drills is

Other sites with social skills stories on various issues relating to children with autism and autistic sensory issues are: