Social Stories For Raising Your Hand

Instructor: Clio Stearns

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.

It is important for all children to learn to participate actively and appropriately in class. This lesson will help you teach your students about hand raising by using social stories.

Social Stories for Hand Raising

A social story is an anecdote told in scripted language, often from a child's point of view, illustrating a social scenario. The aim is to help the child gain confidence and coping strategies for social situations. These stories are particularly helpful for students on the autistic spectrum, those who struggle with speech, language or social cues, or those who need an extra boost with self-regulation.

In this lesson, the social stories are oriented toward helping students understand the importance of raising their hands and how to handle hand-raising situations.

Raising My Hand When I Feel Shy

Every day in school, there are times when my teacher gathers the whole class together on the rug. I usually sit right in front of my teacher. Sometimes, she gathers us for a class meeting, and sometimes it is for a lesson. When my teacher talks to us, she asks questions and tries to help us have a conversation with each other. I know she is trying to help us learn and find out what we know or don't know.

I notice that a lot of my friends raise their hands to give answers or share ideas, but this feels really hard to me. Sometimes, I cannot think of anything to say. Other times, I have an idea, but I feel very anxious about sharing it. My teacher says it is my job to sometimes take a risk and raise my hand to participate.

If I have an idea but I feel nervous, it helps me to say to myself, 'No one will laugh at you!' I know my classmates and my teacher will be respectful. It helps to give a tight squeeze to my fidget, the thing I am allowed to fiddle with to keep my hands busy during class. It also helps to practice what I want to say in my mind or even whisper it very softly before I put my hand up.

When I feel ready to raise my hand, I put it up high and make a proud face. This helps me feel more confident. When my teacher calls on me, I speak as loudly and clearly as possible. My teacher knows that raising my hand is extra hard for me, so she gives me a little wink and a smile to show that she is proud.

After I raise my hand to participate in class, I say to myself, 'Good job.' I know I will tell my parents all about it when I get home!

Raising My Hand Instead of Calling Out

In my class, if you want to ask a question or share an idea, you are supposed to raise your hand first. When you raise your hand, you have to wait for the teacher to call on you before you speak.

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