My friend lives in a world by himself.
Sometimes, he lets me join him.
Sometimes, he doesn’t.

My friend is like the sun.
Sometimes, he shines.
Sometimes, he disappears to a place I can’t see.

My friend is like a puppy dog.
Sometimes, he listens to what I say.
Sometimes, he just doesn’t understand.

My friend is like Abraham Lincoln.
Sometimes, people are amazed by his honesty.
Sometimes, they are angered by it.

My friend is like an Encyclopedia.
Sometimes, all his knowledge is very impressive.
Sometimes, I get bored and want to put him aside.

My friend lives in a world by himself.
Sometimes, I invite him to join my world.
Sometimes, he joins for awhile.

Social Thinking®

Social Thinking® is at the base of my therapy. A Speech/Language Pathologist named Michelle Garcia Winner (MGW) has been very instrumental in developing Social Thinking® Theory and has numerous publications. You can find her information at

Social Thinking® theory suggests that teaching people why and how to think socially will positively impact their ability to behave and respond in effective social ways. Many people with Asperger Syndrome and social language deficits can learn basic social skills. However, without social thinking, their recall and application of these skills will lack personal meaning, and thus may be forgotten or used only when prompted. When thinking socially, people are aware of others around them and the impression they might be making by the behavior they choose. As their social thinking skills improve, their perception and understanding of others becomes clearer. Learning to think about what, why and how other people are thinking when actually in the act of socializing is the end goal of therapy revolving around social thinking. There are many things to learn, and it is important to be patient and encouraging.

Using Social Thinking® theory, information from MGW and others, as well as my own personal experiences, I have developed handouts for parents and teachers. I’ve also created work/reminder sheets for students to use at home. Below are some ideas that I use a lot and have proven effective for me. Please note that on many of them, I suggest drawing pictures. I personally am NOT an artist by any means. Stick figures and super simple drawings have worked for me.…so they should work for you too.

Teaching Social Skills

Social Skills Handout

I have developed a handout to give to parents and teachers when first starting my social skills program, to give people an idea of what I do. In the document, I explain that, ideally, effective Social Skills therapy involves three components: individual or small group therapy, peer and teacher training, and consultation with family. I also explain that social thinking occurs when a person is in the presence of others, that (expected or unexpected ) behavior creates thoughts in other people’s minds, and that eye gaze is an important part of learning about people. For more details, check out the handouts below:

Social Thinking® Basics
Social Thinking Basics Handout
This document is wordy. I use it with kids that read reasonably well and are late elementary school age or older. You will notice there are spaces in the documents. When I use this paper, I will hand write in some personal information or perhaps draw little pictures that support the information. The purpose of this paper is to give the student a simple basic overview of what the therapy is about.

Expected Vs. Unexpected Behavior
Green and Red Behavior Handout
To make this simpler to read and talk about, I have adopted MGW’s verbiage of Green (expected) and Red (unexpected) behavior. You will see spaces between the bullets of information. These are for pictures. It’s pretty important, especially for younger children and those with limited reading skills, to draw pictures representing the information.

Paying Attention with Your Eyes
Paying Attention with Your Eyes Handout
Paying attention to people is an important part of learning about social behavior. This is a sort of simple, positive social story. I draw pictures between the bullets and encourage parents to read and/or discuss this story every day.

back to top