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You are a Social Detective!

Explaining Social Thinking to Kids

by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke
Illustrated by: Kelly Knopp

Item: 9780979292262

Age Group: Grades 3 through 9

Format: softcover
Pages: 62

Every one of us is a Social Detective. We are good Social Detectives when we use our eyes, ears, and brains to figure out what others are planning to do next or are presently doing and what they mean by their words and deeds. This entertaining comic book offers different ways that can be reviewed repeatedly with students to teach them how to develop their own social detective skills. Enjoy watching your students and kids blossom day-by-day into successful Social Detectives!

“It helped me on how to be a little smarter in front of people.”
Victor, 9 years old

Elementary school-aged (K-5) students, and immature older middle and high school students who enjoy visual books, may benefit from this book. But this isn’t just a book for students who have challenges relating to autism spectrum disorders, Asperger’s, ADHD and like challenges. The lessons also offer a variety of engaging ways to introduce the concepts of social thinking to general education teachers, paraprofessionals, parents, caregivers, special educators, grandparents, siblings, daycare workers, scout leaders, etc. So, don’t think you have to be a kid to enjoy learning about social thinking! Throughout the book, keywords are highlighted in bold. These keywords represent the social thinking vocabulary, concepts that can be used in just about every environment, by everyone in the process of discovering social thinking. The words are also fully defined for easy reference in the back of the book. Kids can read this themselves but it is best when adults read it with them, so that adults learn the social thinking vocabulary with the kids and then work to help the kids explore these concepts in their daily lives when the book is closed.

The sections of the book include:
1. School Smarts/Social Smarts & Expected Behaviour
2. Unexpected Behaviour
3. Being a Social Detective

Social thinking vocabulary keywords highlighted throughout the book and defined in the back of the book include:

Social Smarts: The type of “smarts” in our brains that we use whenever we are around other people. Social smarts help our brains to know that others are having thoughts about us and we are having thoughts about them. We use social smarts in school, at home, and EVERYWHERE!

School Smarts: Different types of "smarts” in our brains that we use for school learning. Things like math smarts, computer smarts, music smarts, science smarts, and many more.

Body in the group: Your body is in the group if others feel you are part of the group. For example when you are standing, this means keeping your body about one arm's length away from others. The front of your body will be turned towards others in the group.

Brain in the group: Your brain is in the group when others feel that you are paying attention to what is happening in the group; for example, when you are thinking about others with your eyes and listening to what they are talking about.

Thinking with your eyes: This means that you are using your eyes to look at a person and it makes them feel that you are thinking about what they are saying or doing.

Sample pages:
In our brains there are all types of "smarts." Some people have really great computer smarts, music smarts, sports smarts, math smarts, or even Lego smarts! We think about whether kids are doing what is expected. For example, we notice iff other kids' brains and bodies are part of the group.
We also think about whether kids are doing what is unexpected. We notice when their brain or body are NOT a part of the group. This means kids are doing their own thing and not looking and thinking about others around them. When we don't feel good, we may not seem friendly, we may use a mean-sounding voice or show an angry face. Our body gets tight. This means we are upset.
Social Detectives call this making a Smart Guess! Being a Social Detective builds our social smarts. This makes us better Social thinkers over time.

“This new comic book, You Are a Social Detective: Explaining Social Thinking to Kids, is a perfect introduction to the social thinking curriculum ‘Think Social’. The combination of engaging illustrations and clear concepts set the stage for in depth work on the ‘expected’ and the ‘unexpected’ behavior and other social concepts that are so challenging for our young clients. I especially appreciated the humorous approach to ‘School Smarts’ and ‘Social Smarts’, which are so confusing yet real to our kids. As a psychologist, I have a new tool to introduce those vulnerable social challenges with young and inexperienced social perspective takers and their parents. The entertainment value increases the chance for viable follow-up at home. This is also a good prerequisite to the ‘Superflex’ curriculum. Because this is a long book and the text sets the stage for discussion, therapists will likely need more than one session to cover the entire book.”
- Kacey Chandler, Ph.D., autism specialist and school psychologist, Tucson, Arizona

“Finally, a book that appeals to kids with ASD by using cartoons to convey the subtleties of ‘expected’ and ‘unexpected’ social behaviours. Even better is that there are enough examples to allow kids to grasp the core concepts of Social Thinking. As my teenage son Adam explains it, ‘The best part about this book is finding out how to make other people happy.’”
- Deborah Pugh, parent and Director Research & Training, ACT - Autism Community Training, Vancouver, Canada

You can e-mail your order to products@spedsg.com,
fill up an order form and fax to (65) 6899 8477,
or call (65) 6899 8377.