The Social Compass Curriculum: A Story-Based Intervention Package for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Authors: LouAnne E. Boyd, Christina L. McReynolds, Karen Chanin M.S., PPS

Format: Paperback, 192 pages, 8.5 x 11.0
ISBN: 9781598572957
Price: $59.95

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Children with autism learn social skills best in group settings where they can practice everyday interactions with peers. Now there's a highly effective, ready-to-use curriculum educators can use to explicitly teach social skills right in the classroom! Ideal for Grades 4–8 but easily adaptable for use with older children, this social skills intervention curriculum gives educators 24 lessons that help students with autism make progress in areas critical to social success. Each step-by-step lesson gives students a social story that models a key skill; worksheets that reinforce takeaway points; a simple, memorable icon that helps them remember what to do; opportunities to role-play and rehearse the skill; and take-home worksheets to ensure generalization in settings outside of school.

Why Use The Social Compass Curriculum?
  • Helps students make progress in 4 key areas: nonverbal communication; emotion; social problem solving, and "we" skills for effective conversation
  • Field-tested over 10 years with more than 300 students, with significant positive results
  • Teaches and reinforces social skills with clear directions and visual supports
  • Gives students repeated opportunities to role-play and rehearse social skills with their peers
  • Flexible—lets the teacher go back and review areas where students are struggling
  • Lessons take just 20–40 minutes
  • Based on evidence-based practices such as ABA, visual and peer supports, and Social Stories™
  • Ensures generalization of new skills with activity worksheets to use at home

PRACTICAL MATERIALS: In-class and take-home worksheets, flashcards and handouts that reinforce skills, and a full-color quick-reference poster of the social compass icons.

Helps students develop key social skills like

  • Interpreting body language
  • Dealing with teasing
  • Building empathy
  • Using self-control
  • Accepting change
  • Paying attention
  • Initiating a conversation
  • Sharing information
  • Negotiating needs
  • Avoiding being left out
  • Expanding personal interests
  • and more


Review by: Dr. Mary Jane Weiss, Director, Autism and Applied Behavior Analysis Program & Professor
“A very useful resource for teaching social skills to students with autism spectrum disorders . . . will guide teachers in how to teach these elusive skills in concrete, fun, and interactive ways.”
Review by: Lauren Franke, speech-language pathologist and clinical psychologist
“An evidence-based intervention that is very user-friendly . . . emphasizes understanding of social interactions by contextualizing complex ideas in stories. A highly recommended book.”
Review by: Cindy Golden, Principal/Psychologist of NorthStar Educational and Therapeutic Services, author of The Special Educator's Toolkit; editor of Special Needs Resource Magazine
“A wonderful addition to the resource library of special educators . . . I will certainly include this in my Social Skills library!”
Review by: Gillian Hayes, Associate Professor, Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Sciences, University of California, Irvine
“I have witnessed numerous children develop strong social skills with the help of the Social Compass curriculum. Finally, students from all over the world will be able to use what we in Southern California have had for years through this excellent guide.”
Review by: Eliza DelPizzo-Cheng, In STEPPS: Support, Treatment & Education for Parents, Professionals and Students
“Teachers and students can learn and benefit from this eminently doable curriculum.”
Review by: Belinda Karge, Director Project AIMS: Autism, Inclusion, Math and Science, California State University, Fullerton
“An instructional curriculum that will enhance the lives of children with autism and those on the spectrum. This is a must-have curriculum for every teacher!”
Review by: Michelle Winner, Speech Language Pathologist and Founder of Social Thinking
“Ideal for the busy school based clinician or behaviorist . . . This is an excellent resource for use with our school-age ASD students.”

Table of Contents

About the Material Included in This Curriculum
Foreword: Peter F. Gerhardt
About the Authors

Module 1: Nonverbal Skills
Lesson 1A Body Language/Gestures
Lesson 1B Space and Proximity
Lesson 1C Volume of Voice
Lesson 1D Social Referencing
Module 2: Emotions
Lesson 2A Increasing Emotional Vocabulary
Lesson 2B Identifying Intensity of Feelings
Lesson 2C Empathy
Lesson 2D Positive Self-Talk
Module 3: Social Problem Solving
Lesson 3A Staying on Topic
Lesson 3B Paying Attention
Lesson 3C Accepting Change in Routines
Lesson 3D Resisting Tattling
Lesson 3E Handling Teasing
Lesson 3F Using Self-Control
Lesson 3G Avoiding Being Left Out
Module 4: "We" Skills
Lesson 4A Initiating a Conversation
Lesson 4B Asking Questions
Lesson 4C Sharing Information
Lesson 4D Giving Compliments
Lesson 4E Expanding Personal Interests
Lesson 4F Paraphrasing
Lesson 4G Negotiating Needs
Lesson 4H Maintaining a Conversation
Lesson 4I Ending a Conversation
Appendix A: Photocopiable Materials for Use in Multiple Lessons
Appendix B: Lesson'Specific Resources


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