Archive for March, 2010

Do social stories work?

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

Social stories are short, specifically written stories to help children with autism understand a specific situation, activity or skill.

By describing what happens in a social situation in a concise, accurate and structured manner, that is easily understood by the individual with ASD.

The goal of the social story being to provide the individual with ASD a clear framework of the skill or situation, thus reducing anxieties and stresses, allowing the person with autism to rehearse and practise the skill. The social story also helps the person with autism prepare for a change to routine.

Research suggests that social stories which follow a predefined formula can make a difference in helping an individual with autism understand and improve social and communication skills and behaviours.

A social story should answer the “wh” questions (who, where, why, when and what) using first person text and visual images, showing the individual with autism an acceptable manner of behaviour in a social situation, “without actually having to tell them”.

So do social stories work?

Yes they do, why? By attempting to address the theory of mind, or social skills deficits that all individuals with ASD have.

For many autistic people being able to understand the thoughts and actions of those around them is missing this is due to the theory of mind or social skills deficits. As typically developing beings we are able to “mind read” or predict another persons mood, thoughts, feelings and emotions by simply reading their facial expression, body language and tone of voice or suggestions. With the ASD individual this natural ability is missing.

A social story can help an individual with ASD understand the thoughts and emotions of the people that they may interact with.

By using visual images a social story can be better understood, as generally most autistic people are visual thinkers and learners. The social story is set out in much the same manner as a comic strip conversation, making it easier for the ASD individual to follow.

A social story should be written in first person language and always from the point of view of the autistic individual.

Research shows us that children with autism do respond well to social stories, thus many parents, care givers and teachers use social stories regularly to help improve and encourage positive social and communication skills.

To find out more about social stories and how that can hep your child with ASD visit http://www.autismsocialstories.com

For other specific social stories for your child with ASD visit:
http://www.autismsocialstories.com/school
http://www.autismsocialstories.com/preschool
http://www.autismsocialstories.com/social_skills

Social stories for children on the spectrum

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

Social stories can be used as a treatment to help improve the social and communication skills of children on the spectrum.

Generally all children with autism spectrum disorder will have social skills deficits in social, communication, imagination and interaction skills and behaviours.

It is because of these social skills deficits children on the spectrum have difficulties with social situations, for example making friends, sharing, taking turns play skills and so on.

Social stories were first used as a means of communication, developed around twenty years ago by a therapist that at the time was working with autistic children. Since then social stories have grown in popularity and uses and are now regularly used to teach and improve the social and communication skills of those individuals on the spectrum.

Today social stories are probably one of the major tools used to help individuals on the spectrum learn social and communication skills and behaviours and can be easily adapted to suit their differing needs. There are many sites on the internet offering downloads of social stories for children on the spectrum, one such site is http://www.autismsocialstories.com

A social story is a short descriptive story, like a comic strip with visual images that details a situation or skill in small bite sized pieces, that can be easily understood and followed, by an autistic individual.

The social story follows a specific formula and is normally written in first person language and from the point of view of the autistic individual. With no frill language and visual images the social story breaks the situation or skill down in to relevant social cues, answering the “wh” questions (who, where, when, why and what).

Allowing individuals on the spectrum the opportunity to see what others are expecting of them, how they may be feeling, their emotions,  and give them an idea of what others may be expecting from them.

Social stories for children on the spectrum are used for various situations and skills that the child may be struggling with, like recess, hygiene skills, eating habits etc.

Many parents and teachers use social stories with great results, research suggests children with autism spectrum disorder do respond very well to social stories.

To find out how you can use social stories for children on the spectrum visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com where you will be able to find more information and downloads of social stories.

Improving social skills in children with autism

Monday, March 29th, 2010

One of the significant difficulties for children with autism is their lack of social skills. Treatments available that help with improving social skills in children with autism include strategies such as social stories.

Social skills deficits are common in children on the spectrum, being able to read another person’s body language, tone of voice or facial expression is not a naturally learnt skill for those with autism, these skills need direct teaching.

This lack of social knowledge can lead to social blunders for even the highest functioning children on the spectrum. Without even knowing why, the child with autism can cause upset, ask inappropriate questions, act oddly and generally leave themselves open to taunts and teasing.

Teaching a child with autism how to improve their social skills especially if they are being schooled in mainstream education is almost certainly a necessity.

For many parents with an autistic child improving their child’s social skills is paramount and for this reason many parents with an autistic child turn to therapies and treatments that are readily available such as social stories. Also used in schools, colleges and the community social stories have evolved into one of the major tools in helping young people with autism improve their social and communication skills effectively.

The social story aims to improve social and communication skills in young people with autism, by using visual images in the form of a short story.  Much like a comic strip conversation, that helps the young person with autism interpret the situation or skill, in a manner that they can understand.

A social story follows a specific style or format, a visual framework. That describes the skill or situation in terms of the relevant social cues, the key points, the perspective of others and will suggest some possible responses and possible responses that others may expect from the young person with autism.

The social story answers the “wh” questions (who, where, why, when and what) helping to make the child with autism more comfortable with and in the situation.

The social story breaks down the skill or situation into small bite sized chinks with relevant visual images giving the child on the spectrum the relative information they need to address the skill or situation in a positive manner. By improving social skills in children with autism, social stories help address the child’s social skills deficits helping the “fit in” with their peers, relieving some confusion, anxieties and stress.

To learn more about social stories and download appropriate social stories for children on the spectrum visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

Alternatively other sites offering social stories for children on the spectrum can be found at:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/social_skills

Encourage and teach daily living skills in children with autism

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

As typically developing beings we naturally learn through our senses (sight, sound,  touch, taste and smell) as well as watching our peers and family how to interact with the world around us this is called the theory of mind

For those individuals on the autism spectrum this ability to naturally learn social and communication skills is missing, this is called and common in all individuals with autism. For individuals on the autism spectrum learning social and communication skills needs to be done directly.

Many parents and teachers of children with autism have found that by using visual supports for autism such as social stories and visual support cards, they can help encourage and teach daily living skills in children with autism.

Generally children with autism are visual thinkers and learners and will respond to information when it is presented visually rather than written text or orally, therefore parents and teachers of children with autism use visual supports for autism.

Social stories help improve social, communication, interaction and imagination skills and behaviours. Developed around twenty years ago as a method of communication the social story is one of the most significant treatments used in encouraging and teaching daily living skills in children with autism.

Social stories provide an autistic individual with accurate information about the skill or situation that they are finding difficult or confusing.

The social story describes in detail giving focus to the key points the skill or behavior, using visual images as key social cues the ASD individual can easily relate to the situation or skill. Rather like using a visual plan they can follow a step by step framework making them feel more comfortable with and in the situation.

The social story can be used to encourage and teach daily living skills for children with autism such as: personal hygiene, play skills, taking turns, sharing, personal space. The social story works well in school allowing the student with autism to understand school rules feel more comfortable at recess etc.

Social Stories attempt to address the theory of mind or social skills deficits that are displayed by all children with autism, by giving the ASD individual some perspective on the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors of those around them.

To learn more about social stories and how they might help your child with autism visit any of the following sites were you will find appropriate social stories for download.

http://www.autismsocialstories.com
http://www.autismsocialstories.com/social_skills

Social stories for adolescents with aspergers syndrome disorder

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

Generally adolescents with asperger syndrome display difficulties with social interactions as well as verbal and non-verbal communication.

Many adolescents with asperger syndrome will have strange or unusual interests that can fill their life and conversation. With a lack of social understanding the asperger teen may believe their passion is shared by all around them and fail to recognise that others have their own thought and feelings and may not share their passion.

A teen with asperger syndrome disorder will normally be of average or above average intelligence but lack age appropriate social and communication skills and behaviour. They will almost certainly lack the ability to read facial and body expression, which at times can cause social mistakes and blunders without them even realising.

A teen with asperger syndrome disorder will have difficulty recognising emotion as well as showing emotion.

The asperger teen will almost certainly be bluntly honest and unable to lie, rather like telling it as it is, do not ask if you do not want an honest answer. Many asperger syndrome teens may suffer from sensory processing issues resulting in hyper and hypo sensitivities of the senses, touch, sound, smell, taste and sight.

Generally social stories for adolescents with asperger syndrome disorder are a good way of helping show and support a teen with asperger, by showing them how to deal with and understand social and communication skills they may struggle with.

Social stories are used as a means of teaching appropriate social and communication skills and behaviours.  By providing the asperger individual with a framework detailing the skill or behaviour being taught in a manner the asperger individual can understand through text and visual images, much like a comic strip conversation.

Developed almost twenty years ago social stories are one of the most significant tools used for autistic and asperger individuals as well as those with related conditions. To help them learn and feel more comfortable with social and communication skills.  For example making friends, having a good conversation, social kissing and personal hygiene issues even puberty and menstruation.

To learn more about social stories for adolescents with asperger syndrome disorder and gain immediate access to social stories detailing situations, skills and behaviours such as: puberty, personal space, what are nicknames and many more.

Visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/asperger_adolescents
Or http://www.autismsocialstories.com/autistic_teens

Social stories for teaching social and communication skills to preschool children with autism

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

Social stories are used to teach and re-enforce social and communication skills to preschool children with autism.  The social story is written in first person language and uses visual images to describe a social or communication skill in a manner the child with autism can understand.

Much like a comic strip conversation the social story  can help prepare for a change to routine, or help the child with autism learn or feel more comfortable with a situation, skill or behaviour that they maybe finding difficult to master or deal with; like for example potty training, or the transition into school.

The social story is used to break down the situation or skill into easily understood segments, by giving key focus to the main social cues. By using first person language and visual images or pictures the social story acts as a framework, or plan of the situation, skill or behaviour making it less stressful. This gives the child with autism time to practise the skill which takes away a lot of the anxiety they may be feeling.

For example a simple social story for potty training will detail the key social cues in a visual plan in first person language; for example “Sometimes I need to go potty”

A simple social story can be implemented for many different situations and skills. Normally written by experts social stories can be found and downloaded from various sources on the internet making them an accessible therapy for teaching social and communication skills to preschool children with autism.

Social stories for teaching social and communication skills to preschool children with autism can be downloaded from http://www.autismsocialstories.com/preschool

Preschool can be a confusing time for a toddler with autism, and many parents find that the transition for their toddler with autism can be aided with social stories that help explain the “wh” questions (who, what, where, when and why).

To get immediate access to social stories for preschool children that use age appropriate language and images visit:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/preschool
Alternatively for social stories for preschool children as well as older children and teens visit any of the following sites:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com
http://www.autismsocialstories.com/potty for potty training social stories

Having autism and the ability to mind read

Sunday, March 21st, 2010

The term “Mind reading” probably conjures up thoughts of psychics and mystical beings. This however is not the case. As typically developing beings we have the ability to predict the thoughts and feelings of those around us, by reading the person’s facial and body language. This ability is often referred to as the theory of mind.

With autism however the theory of mind is missing, an autistic individual will struggle to predict emotion, thought, feelings and desires by simply reading the persons body and facial language and expression.

Consequently for those having autism this lack of theory of mind or non-verbal communication skills can cause social blunders at times, which in itself can leave the autistic individual open to bullying in some cases.

Research into autism suggests that children with autism can be helped learn and develop social and communication skills. Including non-verbal communication skills successfully, by using appropriate methods and treatments for autism and related conditions, such as visual support cards, PECS and social stories.

For many children with autism and the ability to mind read is aided successfully using these methods. Social stories are short descriptive visual representations of a skill or behaviour much like a visual framework they can follow. Taking a situation or skill that they are struggling with, like for example, respecting personal space and making it more predictable and routine.

All autistic individuals will want routine and sameness this is a symptom of autism. By using social stories you can easily make unpredictable situations, stressful situations even everyday skills and behaviours that the autistic individual is struggling with more routine, by giving them a clear precise structured framework to follow.

Social stories are appropriate methods and treatments for autism and related conditions. By using visual images, the social story makes it easier to understand the skill. For those with autism information is absorbed and understood far easier if that information is given visually as with visual support cards and social stories.

The social story follows a specific formula of specially designed short no frill sentences with visual images. To download appropriate social stories for children with autism and related conditions visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

Or for other specific social stories for children with autism visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/social_skills

Teaching children with autism communication skills

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

It is common for children with autism to face problems with both verbal and non-verbal communication. Generally all autistic individuals have some kind of speech and communication difficulty. It is these issues that can make interaction with the autistic child difficult.

 

Research into treatments for communication issues shows children with autism benefit from direct teaching of social and communication skills.

 

Many parents with autistic children use direct teaching methods of communication skills such as social stories.

 

Social stories are useful when teaching children with autism communication skills. These short descriptive stories use visual images and first person text to describe a specific social situation or skill, by answering the “wh” questions (who, where, what, when and why) giving autistic individuals a clear visual framework of the communication skill that they are struggling with.


Showing them what to expect and what others may expect from them, which can help make them more comfortable with and in the situation, helping to alleviate many stresses and anxieties.

 

Researchers agree that teaching autistic individuals effective communication skills is essential if they are to reach his or her full potential.

 

The social story can be used for many social and communication difficulties, for example teaching personal space, listening, asking questions, calming down, making friends, having a conversation and so on.

 

Social stories are also used for other social and communication skills such as tooth brushing, recess, looking after a pet, in-fact most social, communication, imagination and interaction difficulties can be tackled using social stories.


To download and learn more about social stories visit:

http://www.autismsocialstories.com

Children with autism that display eating difficulties

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

In typically developing children, eating problems are relatively common, and affect approximately 40 percent of kids.

 

In children with autism spectrum disorder, eating problems are even more common, and can take many different forms.


Autism spectrum disorder is a complex disorder, and the dietary issues displayed by many children on the spectrum can be quite complex also. In autism individuals prefer routine and sameness and this can follow through to what they eat, preferring to eat the same each day.

 

Children with autism can also have sensory sensitivities, which may make them dislike certain textures or tastes. Some autistic children, for example, will eat only soft foods, or only crunchy foods.


Even though many children with autism will display eating difficulties there is still very little real help or investigation into this issue and many parents find themselves looking for solutions endlessly.


Many parents of children with autism that display eating difficulties use social skills stories as a means of attempting to control and alleviate some of the stress and anxiety caused by their child’s eating issues.

 

Social skills stories have many uses and have become one of the significant tools used in helping children with autism understand and deal with issues that they find difficult, stressful or confusing.

 

Generally children with autism spectrum disorder are visual thinkers and learners and can relate to the visual images used in social stories. The social story acts like a visual framework showing the individual with autism the “wh” questions (who, where, what, why and when) detailing in appropriate first person language appropriate behaviours and responses helping the individual with autism understand and deal with the issues that they are facing.

 

Social stories for children with autism that display eating difficulties can be downloaded immediately from http://www.autismsocialstories.com/diet

 

 

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Social stories autism

Monday, March 8th, 2010

Social stories are used to help children and adults with ASD (Autistic spectrum disorders) understand and cope with social and communication skills and behaviours they would otherwise struggle to master.

Social stories autism work by breaking down a task or social situation into small easy to understand steps, the social cues.  Normally social skills stories will include visual images or photographs that are relevant to the story. Most autistic individuals are visual thinkers and learners, which means they find visual information easier to digest and understand.

Therefore many parents, care givers, teachers and other professionals find social stories for autism an ideal tool when communicating and caring for autistic individuals.

By implementing a social story you can help children and adults with ASD master skills and behaviours they struggle with such as: visiting a dentist, recess, asking questions, respecting boundaries and so on. Daily life skills as well as more complex situations can be broken down into relative social cues, with appropriate images, then by following a specific formula of 4 main sentence types the social story can be implemented that will help target the situation, skill or behaviour.

Social stories are a framework of visual representations and appropriate first person language of a skill. That will not only help those with autistic spectrum disorders, but also other children and adults with related conditions.

To find out more about social skills stories and how they can be downloaded and implemented to help children with ASD and related conditions visit http://www.autismsocialstories.com where you will find information on social skills stories and downloads of 100 social skills stories that are all written by an expert in childhood autism.

For many children with ASD social and communication skills are difficult to master, but using social skills stories for autism can help put an end to much of the stress and anxieties they feel.

Get immediate download of social skills stories for autism and related conditions from http://www.autismsocialstories.com

OR 

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/school_resources

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How having autism may affect your teen

Saturday, March 6th, 2010

For the majority of us the teenage years are our most social years, we change from being a child and treated as one, into a young adult. Our expectations change, as well as the expectations put on us from those within our world.

 

If you are on the spectrum this time of your life can cause anxieties, stress and confusion. Imagine being dropped off the bus in a totally alien environment where no one spoke your language, what would you do? How would you cope?

 

Well having autism is similar, the world around you is confusing, you like routines, things to the stay the same and can become confused when met by changes or unfamiliar situations.

 

For example puberty, confusing for a typically developing teen, but for a teen with ASD who already has difficulties with communication and social skills this time is going to be even more stressful. If you do not know how to ask what is happening to you, your emotions and your body how are you going to even begin to make sense of puberty?

 

That’s where autistic tools such as social stories can help.  A social story is used as a means of communication that can help calm nerves, reduce anxieties and explain even the most confusing situation, skill or behaviour that your teen with ASD might be struggling to cope with.

 

For example is your autistic teen struggling with menstruation? A social story can explain the “wh” questions (what, where, when and why) in a manner your teen with autism will understand. Many parents trust autistic tools such as social stories to help them find ways of teaching social and communication skills and behaviours.

 

Much like a comic strip conversation a social story is a visual framework detailing visually the skill or behaviour showing the key focus points and giving possible behaviour suggestions, which will allow the autistic teen to see what is expected of them as well as what they should be expecting from others.

 

The social story can also help the teen with autism practise a skill, for example going out with mates bowling, cinema, a meal out, a social kiss and so on helping calm and reassure the teen with autism. Making a confusing or stressful situation more routine, which in turn will hep the autistic teen feel more comfortable, reducing anxiety and stress.

 

Consequently, knowing how having autism may affect your teen you are now able to help and take more control by providing support in the form of social skills stories for autistic teens, these can be downloaded from http://www.autismsocialstories.com/autistic_teens

 

Or alternatively social skills stories for autistic teens can be downloaded from http://www.autismsocialstories.com/asd-teens

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/asperger_adolescents

 

By visiting any of these sites you can also find more information on what social skills stories are and how they are implemented to help with teenage issues for teenagers on the spectrum.


Other social skills stories are found at http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

 

 

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Social stories that help with autistic behavior issues

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Social stories are a common strategy used when dealing with autistic behaviour issues, the social story can help the individual with ASD to ‘read’ and understand  a social situation, activity or skill.

 

Social stories were first developed by Carol Gray around twenty years ago to help her communicate with the autistic children she was working with.

 

Social stories seek to include answers to the “wh” questions (who, what, when, where, and why) that the individual with ASD may need to know to allow them to master the situation, activity or skill they are struggling with, or may struggle with if the story is being used to help with a change to routine for example.

 

Social stories are used effectively for many situations, activities and skills not just how to interact and communicate in social settings. They can be used to learn new skills, to rehearse changes to routines, activities, and how to respond appropriately to feelings like anger and frustration.

 

Social stories that help with autistic behavior issues can be downloaded from sites such as: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/behavior where you can find 65 autistic behaviour social stories ready for immediate download as well as information on what are social stories?


Social stories are short descriptive, visual frameworks that are written to help children with autism to understand a skill or behaviour that they would otherwise struggle with or find stressful or confusing.

 

Much like a comic strip conversation the social story is written in first person text and follows a specific formula, which enables the autistic individual to prepare for and rehearse. Generally all individuals with autism are visual thinkers and learners, making visual information easier to understand. Social stories embrace this concept as they are normally visually rich, with appropriate text.

 

Many parents, teachers and other professionals that work with autistic children use social stories that help with autistic behavior issues such as stimming, hygiene issues, sharing, teasing even recess.

 

To get started with social stories that help with autistic behaviours visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com


For all other social stories visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

OR http://www.autismsocialstories.com/social_skills

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/behavior

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Using social stories for direct teaching of healthy hygiene habits in autism

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

“Everyday”, “normal” hygiene routines for the majority of us come naturally. As typically developing individuals we have been programmed to watch, listen and learn from those around us and this is how we pick up on our hygiene routines.

 

For individuals on the spectrum this ability to watch, listen and learn is missing, autistic individuals are less likely to learn everyday, normal hygiene routines from watching others and in most cases will need direct teaching of these skills.

 

This can be done through the use of visual supports for autism and related conditions, we know autistic individuals are visual thinkers and learners, thus using visual supports for autism makes good sense. An individuals on the spectrum are far more likely to understand and follow a visual prompt than a written prompt or oral.

 

There are many visual support aids for autism available but probably the most significant of these are social skills stories. These were introduced around twenty years ago specifically for children with autism and related conditions, to help them communicate and understand skills and behaviours that they were struggling to master.

 

Deficits in social and communication skills are common to autism and using social skills stories has been proven affective. Many parents, teachers and other professionals use visual support aids for autism to help them teach and re-enforce skills and behaviours, for example hygiene routines like, brushing teeth, washing hair, getting a hair cut and so on.

 

Used correctly social stories for direct teaching of healthy hygiene habits in autism are effective. You may download social stories from sites such as: http://www.autismsocialstories.com/hygiene

 

Social stories are short, visual descriptive plans of a skill or behaviour, much like a comic strip. Social stories break the skill down into small visual steps, describing and showing the “wh” questions (who, where, what, when and why). Helping the individual with ASD understand what is expected of them, and in return what they can expect from others.

 

Making the individual with ASD feel more comfortable with and in the situation, which in turn can eliminate much of the stress and confusion they may be feeling.

 

Using social stories for direct teaching of healthy hygiene habits in autism can be achieved. To download hygiene social stories for autism visit http://www.autismsocialstories.com/hygiene for all other social stories for autism visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

Remember hygiene social stories for autism can be immediately downloaded and implemented today to help overcome hygiene issues in children with autism, as well as teens.]

 

 

 

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What are social stories for ASD?

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Social skills stories are used to teach social and communication skills to individuals with autism spectrum disorder and related conditions. Developed around twenty years ago by therapist Carol Gray to teach communication skills to the ASD children she was working with.

 

A social skills story is much like a comic strip conversation, which describes using visual prompts and text the “wh” (who, what, where, why and when) questions for a particular skill or behaviour.

 

For example social stories are used in situations such as; hygiene issues ~ like tooth brushing, showering etc. with teenagers to help with issues such as puberty, menstruation, making friends and social behaviour and so on.

 

By showing the social cues or prompts the social skills story can give specific information in a step by step visual plan or framework in a manner that can be easily digested and understood by the individual with ASD.

 

Social stories provide ASD children, teens and adults information which will help them determine how another person may be feeling their emotions, thoughts and actions helping the ASD individual better react and respond in specific situations.

 

Social stories are probably one of the most significant tools used to help teach social and communication skills to individuals with autism spectrum disorder. Consequently social skills stories for ASD can now be easily adapted and are generally always visually rich.

 

By addressing the theory of mind (social skills deficits) presented the ASD individuals, for example social stoires can be used in the home, school, college and almost anywhere where the individual with autism needs help to understand and master a skill or behaviour that they are struggling to deal with.


Hopefully this will answer the ~ what are social skills stories for ASD question, for more information and to download social skills stories for ASD and related conditions visit: http://www.autismsocialstories.com

 

Other sites offering downloads of social stories for individuals with autism spectrum disorder can be found at:

http://www.autismsocialstoires.com/social_skills

http://www.autismsocialstories.com/school

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