The PBIS World Book

Social Stories

Why should I do it:

  • Helps teach students routines, expectations, and behavioral standards in an alternative way
  • Reinforces correct behavior
  • Information presented in a story format
  • Provides visual examples of behavior expectations
  • Provides a more personalized and tailored behavioral intervention
  • Helps involve students in the learning process
  • Works well with students on the autism spectrum and those with ADD/ADHD

When should I do it:

  • When a student fails to grasp social norms, routines, and expectations, like walking down the hall, using restroom facilities, following lunch procedure, using manners, using greetings, asking for help properly, etc
  • When a student is on the autism spectrum or has ADD/ADHD
  • When a student is disorganized, unprepared, disheveled
  • When a student needs reinforcement of class rules, routines, procedures, etc
  • When a student lacks social skills
  • When a student does not respond to cues, redirection, refocusing, etc
  • When a student fails to complete work, homework, expectations, etc

How do I do it:

  • You can either look for a pre-made social story in the resources below or create your own using the resources below or you can take one from the resources and adapt it to your needs
  • Ask your Resource Room teacher for assistance if you need help creating a social story or getting it started
  • Basic steps to creating a social story:
    • Create a list or outline of the steps in the routine or procedure the student needs work or reinforcement on, like behavior in the hall, using the bathroom, starting work, asking for help, etc
    • For each step of the process, develop a simple sentence to explain the step, for example “open your desk and get your book out”, or “walk to the door and knock”, etc
    • Next to each step and sentence, utilize a picture to represent the action, either a generic image or graphic, or an actual picture of the student performing that step
    • When the social story is complete, review it with the student daily before they perform that routine, procedure, or activity
    • After the student learns the social story well, have them review it on their own before they perform that routine, procedure, or activity
    • You may slowly wean the student off the social story as they consistently perform the task correctly

Resources & Support for technique: