Social Thinking is Flexible Thinking
Superflex is more than a superhero! It’s a curriculum designed to teach younger (primarily 3rd-5th grade) students how to regulate their behaviors and become stronger social problem solvers. Professionals and parents alike use this engaging teaching approach to help students learn about their own inner Superflex (their superheroic, flexible social thinking) and the related strategies they can use to outwit and outsmart various social challenges, represented by Unthinkable characters, such as Glassman, Brain Eater, One-Sided Sid, Mean Jean, and others.
– Glassman (who causes our over-reactions to small things)
– Brain Eater (the social cognitive challenges we see most often in our students – distractibility!)
– One-Sided Sid (who gets people to talk only about themselves)
– Un-Wonderer (who likes to keep people from thinking about other)
related Unthinkable characters: One-Sided Sid, who gets people to talk only about themselves, and his sidekick sister Un-Wonderer, who likes to keep people from thinking about others. This clever duo tries to get students to do or say things that show they’re only thinking about themselves and not others.
If you haven’t heard about Michelle Garcia Winner and her wonderful series of curriculum about social thinking…get on it, school counselors! She creates such positive, useful activities. One of my favorites is herSuperflex curriculum (written with Stephanie Madrigal), especially for teaching strategies to defeat student-identified problem behaviors. Two of my favorite elements are the “Unthinkables,” characters that help externalize students’ identified behaviors, and the superhero representing proactive, strategic thinking that defeats these Unthinkables. If you click the link to Amazon from the picture to the right, you can see a full description of the curriculum, as well as a long list of detailed reviews.
I believe this activity can enhance students’ understanding of the steps in identifying their Unthinkable’s suggestions and a Superflex strategy that could work to defeat the Unthinkable. Many students reported that they felt the comic strip helped them to better remember the strategies, and even asked to make more to remember multiple strategies. This activity was in addition to the many activities already included in the curriculum.
So give it a try with your students! And if you do, will you let us know how it goes?
Comic Strip Story PDF to download and print out: Comic Strip Story