Protecting Children: Using Social Stories to Introduce Concepts and Emergency Preparedness Drills

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Course Time: 35 Minutes

For the second installment of our new protecting children series, we are pleased to provide you with this free course from our friend Tara Tuchel at Autism Little Learners. The Institute for Childhood Preparedness and Autism Little Learners teamed up to create a series of social stories to help children prepare for safety and emergency preparedness drills. These books are for all children to enjoy, but they are also aimed at helping children with Autism understand, learn, and communicate new concepts. Our social stories help prepare children ahead of time for the changes in routine that come with performing safety drills.

This course will teach participants how to introduce new concepts in the classroom and how to use social stories to teach children about emergency preparedness drills in a safe and comfortable environment. Participants will receive free copies to download of the following drills: Fire Drill, Tornado Drill, Active Shooter Drill (Bees to a Beehive), Hurricane Social Story, and Wildfires Social Story.

Thank you so much to Tara Tuchel from Autism Little Learners for all your important work helping children with Autism.

Learning Goals and Objectives:

  • Discuss how to use visual supports to teach and prepare children for upcoming changes in their routine
  • Identify at least two ways to prepare and meet children at their level for emergency preparedness drills
  • Describe the best learning environment to teach children about drills through social stories
  • Identify at least two resources to have available when performing emergency preparedness drills
  • Describe how to help children and support them as they return to school

Your Instructor


Tara is a speech/language pathologist who has specialized in autism for the past 20 years. She started her career at the elementary level and is now enjoying the early childhood level in Minnesota. Tara has a published children’s book about autism titled “My Best Friend Will” and is an adjunct faculty member for the ASD licensure program at Hamline University. In 2015 and 2016 Tara traveled to Dmitrov, Russia to work side by side with educators and parents to teach them how to work with children with autism.

Learn more about our offerings and check out all of our early childhood resources: The Institute for Childhood Preparedness.

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