Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder find social skills difficult and confusing this is due to their autistic impairments.
What are Autistic Impairments?
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: Can 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