MAIER Professional Development Workshop

Social Stories

Speaker: Carol Gray

Carol Gray is a Consultant to Children, Adolescents, and Adults with Autism, providing support via workshops and presentations, information, referral, resources, and direct services for individuals with autism, their families, and professionals who work on their behalf. She is an internationally sought-after keynote and seminar speaker and has completed over 1,000 presentations.

Carol is best known for the development of Social Stories, a well-respected evidence-based practice used worldwide with people with autism of all ages. Carol was the first teacher for students with autism at Jenison Public Schools in Jenison, Michigan, from 1977 through 2004. In 1989, Carol began writing stories for her students to share information with them that they seemed to be missing, which many of us take for granted. Many of the stories resulted in an immediate and marked improvement in her students’ responses to daily events and interactions.

Carol is also the founder of a very effective social philosophy that 1) ‘abandons all assumptions,’ 2) regards both the typical and autism perspective as ‘equally valid,’ and 3) recognizes the ‘social impairment in autism’ as shared (noting the well-intentioned but misguided mistakes of parents and professionals). She has completed groundbreaking work on some of the most challenging topics in autism by reviewing the research, outlining new theories, and developing practical instructional strategies, most notably Gray’s Guide to Bullying (2004) and Gray’s Guide to Loss, Learning, and Students with ASD (2003).

Carol has received many awards for her international contribution to the education and welfare of children, adolescents, and adults with autism. Carol lives in west Michigan with her husband, Brian, and two basset hounds, Emma and Hank.

Target Audience: This workshop is for anyone working on behalf of toddlers, children, adolescents, or adults with autism with moderate learning challenges to gifted academic ability. With slight modification, the workshop content and activities are equally valuable for those working with more severe learning challenges.

Workshop Description: In January of 1991, Carol Gray initiated and developed Social Stories*. Social Stories™ has helped individuals with autism of all ages understand and respond effectively to daily interactions and events. Social Stories are among the most widely used evidence-based instructional strategies for learners with autism in the world. Unfortunately, they are also frequently misused and misunderstood. Learning how to develop and implement a Social Story is critical to its effectiveness, safety, and integrity. The goal is to build positive social concepts and skills in an individually tailored, unassuming, and supportive learning context.

Learning Outcomes: At the close of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  1. Outline the philosophy and research-based rationale,
  2. Explain how the Social Story goal can determine what is – and is not – a Social Story,
  3. List the 10.2 criteria to ensure integrity and safety of every Story,
  4. Define all Social Story terms,
  5. Describe how research and philosophy create significant ties between how Story research, development, implementation come together, and
  6. Write a Social Story

Upon completion of the workshop, you may access and download your contact hours certificate using the link provided. 6 Contact Hours can be earned upon completion of this workshop.

Interested in being on MAIER’s mailing list to receive announcements of new PD offerings? 
Sign up for MAIER’s mailing list here.

Maine Autism Institute logo

Click below to access workshop videos and course materials, and to access your contact hours certificate upon completion of workshop.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Course Materials

Contact Hours certificate

The Maine Department of Education provides significant support and funding for the activities and outreach of the Maine Autism Institute for Education and Research.

Maine Department of Education logo   Logo for US Office of Special Education Programs