Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Free Social Stories About Transitions

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A collection of free social stories about transitions. Below you'll find stories that focus on day-to-day transitions such as switching tasks and dealing with changes in routine.

Transitions are one thing many kids struggle with. Things like moving to a new activity, switching tasks, a change in the routine, cleaning up even though you're not done playing, being flexible, leaving somewhere fun...those sorts of things. 

These types of transitions can be a big challenge. Especially if the transition involves moving from a desired activity to something less desirable. I mean who doesn't struggle with that.

Thankfully, there are lots of ways to help kids who struggle with transitions. You can use timers and visual schedules for instance. Or read picture books about transitions. You can also use social stories, which is obviously our focus here.

Social stories are a great way to teach kids about being flexible and that changes and surprises are okay. 

However, when I was putting together this list of free social stories about transitions, I was surprised how few options there were. It was kind of disappointing actually. Trust me, I searched and searched for free ones. There just weren't many available that focused on the more general day-to-day transitions like I wanted. 

Sure I could find lots of stories that focused on big changes and transitions such as divorce, starting school, moving, and a new baby, but I already have social story lists dedicated to those topics. I wanted the small transitions. The little changes that happen in our daily lives that can throw one off for the rest of the day.

So while this list of social stories for transitions isn't huge, by any means, I hope it is a great starting point for talking about daily transitions, changes in routine, and schedule changes. Or, at the very least, it might give you ideas for writing your own story.

Looking for a social story for transitions? Try one of these free social stories about transitions and changes in routine

This collection of social stories for transitions and changes in routine was last updated on November 3, 2022. New stories were added, dead links were removed, and more details were provided to make sure you can find what you need quicker.

Free Printable Social Stories About Transitions & About Change in Routine

I'm a big fan of printable social stories because you can take them with you on the go. I also always suggest laminating social stories for durability. So if your child is struggling with transitions, then you will likely find these printable transition social stories to be a great resource.

Heads up, though, some of these social stories require you to have a Teachers Pay Teachers account before you can download them. Don't worry, it's free to join!

I've rounded up some options for you to explore. That way you can find the best transition social story for you and your child. Or you can simply use ideas from different stories below to write your own custom story (free social story templates here to help).

Please note that just because a social story is listed here does not mean I endorse its content. After all, many social stories tend to be poorly written and/or teach autistic masking. Besides, I haven't read all of these stories word for word myself. So please read through the stories carefully before using them with your child.

1. Free Putting Away My Blocks Transitioning Social Story from Creative Lab on Teachers Pay Teachers - This story focuses on putting away blocks and transitioning to a new task so it pretty specific. However, you could take inspiration and modify the story to fit a more general theme.

2. Free Time's Up Social Story from Denise Wilson on Teachers Pay Teachers - An 8 page story that also includes a PowerPoint version. That hopefully means you can edit it.

3. Free Understanding & Handling Change Social Story from Jill Kuzma - This social story is very busy visually so it might be overwhelming for some kids to read through. It is, however, pretty detailed. 

4. Free Schedule Changes Social Story from Michelle Zaydlin on Teachers Pay Teachers - A short story (only 5 pages apparently) that talks about changes in routines/schedules. It looks pretty colorful too.

5. Free "Go With The Flow" Social Story for Middle Schoolers from Michael Begg on Teachers Pay Teachers - This story appears to talk about unexpected schedule changes and the importance of being flexible.

6. Changes to Our Routine & My Day is Different Social Story from Happy Learners - There are two short text-only social stories available here about when routines change.

7. Editable I Can Handle Transitions Social Story from Ms. Lori School Social Worker on Teachers Pay Teachers - This story breaks down what a transition is and how to make transitions easier. An editable version is included so that you can customize the text and pictures.

Video Social Story About How to Make Transitions

Here's a video social story that discusses moving from one activity to another. Again, like the stories above, some of the wording may not be great. However, I wanted to make sure you had lots of different options for discussing transitions with your kids.

Can't Find Exactly What You Need? Here are Some Other Social Story Options...

Didn't find quite what you needed above? Don't feel like writing one from scratch yourself? Well, here are some paid social stories related to the topic of transitions and switching tasks that you might want to consider.

  • Being Flexible Social Story - This story focuses on discussing the importance of being flexible in the context of play. However, the skills taught in this story can be generalized to handling schedule changes or unexpected surprises.
  • Time to Go Social Story - This story is about having to leave something fun like a play date or the playground and the transition involved with that.

Whether you're helping with transitions at home, at school, or between different environments, using a social story can help. Hopefully one of the free social stories about transitions above will be just what you need.

Looking for a social story for transitions? Try one of these free social stories about transitions and changes in routine