Social stories were created by Carol Gray in 1991. They are short descriptions of a particular situation, event or activity, which include specific information about what to expect in that situation and why. They were developed to support child and adults with Autism but are very useful tools to help all children. They help a child to make sense of a situation and helps them to feel understood and supported.
What are social stories for?
Social stories can be used to:
help a child to cope with changes to routine and unexpected events (for example; starting a new school, new class, absence of teacher, moving house, thunderstorms).
develop self-care skills (for example, how to clean teeth, wash hands or get dressed), social skills (for example, sharing, asking for help, saying thank you, waiting your turn) and academic abilities
as a behavioural strategy to help manage situations that arise for them (for example, what to do when angry, how to cope with not winning).
help a child to understand how others might behave or respond in a particular situation.
help others understand the perspective of a child in their class and why they may respond or behave in a particular way.
provide positive feedback to a child about an area of strength or achievement in order to develop self-esteem.
We use a wide range of social stories in Walkley and these are adapted to the needs of each individual child. Below are some social stories that we have used with children in school that you may find helpful.
Examples from the Carol Gray website include:
This uses simple text and large illustrations to identify safety measures in several areas, including the physical environment (rails, gates, doors and locks), safety equipment (helmets, life jackets, seat belts), signs, and more. The repetitive format builds predictability into the content, reinforcing the reassuring message.
There are many other examples and personalised stories that we use in school. We are happy to adapt them to the needs of your children. There are also lots of examples online. Please contact the pastoral team if you need any further advice.