Archive for the ‘social stories’ Category

How do Social Stories Help Children with Autism Learn Social Skills?

Thursday, November 28th, 2013

Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder find social skills difficult and confusing this is due to their autistic deficits

What are Autistic Deficits?

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a neurological disorder which affects how an individual processes information, thinks, acts and reacts. The characteristics of autism are deficits in social, communication and imagination skills.

Typically children with Autism Spectrum Disorder are visual thinkers and learners, which means they think in pictures, therefore Visual Supports are of more benefit.

Visual Supports like social stories are used as a means of communication and as a method of support when teaching and re-enforcing skills and behaviours that the ASD child is finding difficult.

So: How do Social Stories Help Children with Autism Learn Social Skills

 

The answer is YES they can. Introduced around twenty years ago social stories are now one of the major Visual Supports used in the treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder and related conditions.

Social stories are short descriptive pieces of text which use visual images to describe a situation or skill using appropriate key points. Much like a comic script the social skills story can be easily implemented and needs no formal training to use.

Social stories are a role model or visual step by step plan of a skill or situation. Social stories should follow a set formula of sentence type: Descriptive, Directive, Perspective and control sentences in a manner the child with ASD will be able to follow easily.

Typically a social skills story will answer the “wh” questions – who, where, why, when and what as well as “HOW” and give an insight into the thoughts and feeling of others which is an area of marked weakness in most individuals with Autism.

Generally any treatment of Autism Spectrum Disorder should be visual, easy to implement, and convenient for use in the home, as well as a t school and college.

A social skills story will help with transitions, changes to routines which is another area of difficulty for the vast majority of individuals with Autism, as well as learning new skills, changing behaviours, re-enforcing already learnt skills, in-fact almost all situations and skills the child with ASD is struggling with.

To learn more about how social stories are used, written and implemented visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

 

Social Skills Teaching with Social Stories

Monday, July 9th, 2012

Social skills stories are used for teaching and helping children with autism to understand social awareness skills, social interactions, communication, expectations, how to deal with routine changes, unfamiliar activities and much more…

The social skills story is a brief descriptive story which uses first person text and images/pictures that provide information regarding a social situation.

When children with autism are given information that helps them understand the expectations of a situation, their problem behaviour within that situation is reduced or minimized.

Social skills teaching with social stories provides a foundation/framework for the child on the spectrum to refer to/follow, thus making the situation more familiar. Typically most children on the spectrum will prefer sameness and will dislike unfamiliarity, to this end the social skills story is a real benefit.

By detailing the skill being addressed the social skills story uses images/pictures and short specific sentences which generally follow a set pattern of sentence type: directive – perspective – control – descriptive.

Social skills teaching with social stories typically needs no formal training stories can be obtained for various skills/situations that the child on the spectrum is struggling with from hygiene issues like puberty to going out and school related issues

A social skills story ia an autism resource which addresses the skill/situation by breaking it down into smaller easier to understand sections, using images and text it will answer the ever important “wh” questions – who, what, why, where and when as well as “HOW” and should also offer an insight into the thoughts, feelings and emotions of others which is an area of considerable weakness in most children with autism.

To learn more about how social skills teaching with social stories can be achieved please visit:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com 

Where you will find relevant information on social stories as well as other appropriate autism resources, such as communication cards, behaviour plans and so on.

http://www.autismsocialstories.com

Using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

Commonly children on the autism spectrum HAVE difficulties WITH AND IN social situations.

The social awareness skills we take for granted – the ability to “read” peoples body and facial expression ARE NOT skills that children on the autism spectrum learn naturally.

A lack of social awareness skills makes it difficult for these children to make and keep friends and can lead to social isolation.

However, using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD has proven effective. The social story is typically visual, and as we know the majority of children on the autism spectrum are indeed visual thinkers and learners.

Therefore this type of teaching aid is going to work and give better results.

The social skills story can be adapted to suit all ages and abilities and there is NO formal training needed to be able to use this autism resource.

Introducing social stories

Typically using social stories to teach social skills to kids with ASD is beneficial in all area of social awareness skills teaching for example: making friends, sharing, calming down, Visiting the Dentist and so on…

·         The social story uses first person text and visual images to describe the skill or situation from the child’s own perspective

·         The social story breaks the situation/skill down into smaller easier to understand sections

·         The social skills story acts like a visual plan or framework

·         The social skills story answers the “wh” questions – who, what. why, when and where

·         The social story also explains “HOW”

·         Social stories should aim to also give an insight into the thoughts, feelings and emotions of others

·         Social stories should offer possible outcomes

For the vast majority of kids with autis,  social awareness skills ARE very difficult to learn and direct teaching is generally needed, this is what the social skills story WILL DO!

Parents and teachers report success in teaching social awareness skills and a drop in communication difficulties once social skills stories have been introduced.

To learn more about how social stories work and gain immediate access to 100 social skills stories downloads visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/stories.html

Having Autism and finding friends

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

For most children with autism lacking social interaction skills is common. Many children with autism will want to make and have friends but will find this process confusing and stressful.

Lacking social interaction skills is often referred to as the autism triad of impairments but those autism triad of impairments will vary from child to child.

The actual degree a child is affected with the autism triad of impairments will generally depend on the individual’s social development.

Some children with autism on the lower end of the autism scale may have little or no language and may have other related disabilities. On the other end of the autism scale those children with asperger syndrome will often be schooled in mainstream schools and be of average to above average intelligence. This set of individuals will probably desire friendships.

Those children with asperger syndrome or mild autism will probably want friendships but making and maintaining those friendships will be a struggle, unfortunately it is believed around 40% of autistic children in mainstream education will at some point be a victim to bullying.

For most typically developing children recess and break times are a time of fun and a chance to run around and interact with their peers, this is “normal behavior”

However this is not the case with an autistic child, often the sound of the bell can fill them with fear and dread. Autistic children prefer structure, routine and dislike surprises, noises and the unstructured chaos of free time. They find choice making difficult and can sometimes be overwhelmed by recess and break times.

A lot of autistic children find recess confusing, there are a lot of choices to be made, what to play with, who to play with, what to do, so many choices a “typical child” will take for granted and enjoy, this is not the case with an autistic child.

For example a simple game, the autistic child may choose to join in with their peers, but may find comprehending the rules confusing, they may not understand the need for the rules, and then just as they start to understand the rules may change or the game may stop.

The other end to this is those children with autism that will stick rigidly to the rule and this can sometimes take the fun out of the game for the other normally developing children, they may loose interest and unfortunately the autistic child may not understand why this is and become distressed.

Some autistic children can become overwhelmed by noise, which can make recess or break time a painful and stressful time, you may find them pacing up and down in their own little world until recess is over and they can return to the routine and structure of the classroom.

All these factors can make autism and finding friends difficult to say the very least.

So how can you help with the problem of autism and finding friends?

Generally as we discussed earlier kids with autism prefer structure and routine, this can be achieved by the use of autism visual supports such as autism visual schedules and social skills stories, these resources are used in the classroom to add structure and routine the child’s day.

These autism visual supports can also be used to help kids with autism cope with recess and break times taking away some of anxieties they may feel around this time of the day.

The autism visual supports can also be used to help autistic children understand how to maintain friendships, by teaching the autistic child how to use conversation, how to pretend play, how to be kind, respect peoples feelings and personal space, how to share and make choices and so on, all social skills we take for granted, but an autistic child will need to be taught these social skills directly.

Therefore the perfect place to start with autism and making friends is with autism visual supports such as autism visual schedules and social skills stories to teach the autistic child the social skills necessary for making and maintaining friendships and dealing with recess and break times.

 

You can find appropriate social skills stories and other autism resources for kids with autism for download at:

 

www.autismsocialstories.com

www.autismsocialstories.com/stories.html

www.autismsocialstories.com/sensory.html