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Social Stories for Taking Turns

Instructor: Clio Stearns

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

Taking turns is an important skill for students to develop when they are going to be spending time with others. The social stories in this lesson help students think through strategies and challenges involved in taking turns.

Learning to Take Turns

As a teacher who works with students with special needs, one of your main tasks is to help your students learn to be in social situations with other students. This means they need to learn the rules associated with collaborative play, group conversations, and teamwork. One important strategy that can be really difficult for students to develop is that of taking turns. Whether they are taking turns with a toy, taking turns in a game, or taking turns as part of a conversation, students who understand this skill will be better prepared to partner with other children. Social stories, or explicit anecdotes directly related to a skill set that students are struggling with, can be a great way to help students consider the challenges and advantages of taking turns with others.

Taking Turns When Playing

I love to play with my friends and with my sister! When I am playing with my friends, we play board games and we play sports. We play inside with toys, and we play outside with balls or with a jump rope. When I am playing with my sister, we usually play with dolls, or sometimes we build with blocks. Playing with other people can be so much fun!

The hard part about playing is taking turns. Taking turns means making sure everyone gets a fair chance to play. Taking turns means if we are having trouble sharing a toy, someone gets to use it for a minute, and then the next person gets to use it for a minute. That way, everyone gets a chance.

Even though taking turns helps make our play time fair, I have a hard time with it! Sometimes, I feel impatient when it is the other person's turn. I want to grab the toy from them. I wish it could be my turn the whole time! Sometimes, it makes me not want to play with other people at all.

When I am having a hard time taking turns, I close my eyes and take a few deep breaths. I say to myself, 'It will be my turn soon.' It can also help to set a timer. When I set a timer, I can make sure that the turns are really fair. Setting a timer also helps me see how soon my turn is coming.

When I do a good job taking turns, it helps my friends and my sister see that I am fun and fair to play with. That makes them want to play with me more, and I always have fun playing with them in the end!

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