An Autism Connection

Sunday, April 13, 2014

How big is the problem? Social skills lesson/Freebie

One of the issues my students have is their reactions to problems that come their way. A pencil lead could break and there might be a total meltdown, or a student tells us he has to go to the bathroom, and we tell him to wait a minute as someone is in there, and there is a full blown tantrum. So we spent a few days and talked about problems. We put the problems on post it notes and put them on a big poster that had a line scale at the bottom and numbers 0-5. Number zero is a glitch or no problem at all. We put the pencil lead  breaking here. Number 1 is a little problem, such as waiting for the restroom. Number 3 is a medium problem, such as falling down and breaking your arm. Number 5 is a catastrophe, such as an earthquake or someone dying. We had the students list as many as they could, and then the staff listed problems that we had seen them have. We had a great list going on. Anytime we saw them have a problem after this, we asked where it was on the scale. I have pictures but all of them have  student in them and I don't know how to delete them or hide their faces yet.

Then in power point, I made a colorful chart to show our 5 levels and how they might feel at each of those levels.

Next, I created a problem arrow with the same color scheme and labels, along with another arrow that shows the reactions/ feelings  for each level, and an arrow between them asking if the reaction matches the problem. 


We then role played and reviewed. This has actually been a very helpful lesson. When we see meltdowns starting, we ask if the meltdown matches the problem, and it has stopped a few of them in their tracks. I have to love that! I am including a link to this if you want them in your classroom, just click HERE.

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