As the holidays approach many children are faced with events that are outside of their daily routine. For some children, this can be a difficult and stressful time. Many children with autism find comfort and peace in daily routines and when these routines are disrupted, they can begin to engage in challenging behavior.
Social stories are short stories that describe a social situation.
Something that can be helpful for children who have a difficult time when presented with novel events and changes in routines, is the use of social stories. Social stories are short stories that describe a social situation that your child will likely encounter. They are a tool developed by Carol Gray to help individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder better understand social situations and how to respond appropriately. This helps prime the child for the situation and reviews different appropriate behaviors that they can engage in when faced with these situations.
Some holiday topics that might be helpful to have a social story for are- Trick-or-Treating, Social Distanced Trick-or-Treating, Getting Dressed for Winter, Visiting Family for the Holidays, or My Family’s Thanksgiving.
The sky is the limit!
The topics are endless. There are many resources available online for creating social stories like here and here to name a few. If you are interested in learning more and receiving individualized help for your child with Autism or behavioral difficulties, The Behavior Exchange is here to help!
For more information on Social Stories you can visit https://carolgraysocialstories.com/. Carol has written several articles and chapters outlining the success and use of social stories.
This blog post was written by: Angela Hergenrether M.S., BCBA, LBA