The ICONz High School Curriculum consists of social stories about situations that high school students experience every day. Strategically embedded throughout the stories are the nine ICONz concepts. The situations and the expectations of adults and other adolescents help our students focus on social interaction and gain an understanding of others. They learn about motivation in others and about how they respond to others in their daily lives — whether to peers or adults.
How It Works
Each of the 24 lessons in the Curriculum follows the same format. The stories change with each lesson as six high school characters are followed at home, school and in their communities. Some of the characters first appeared in the Middle School Curriculum. For students familiar with the Middle School Curriculum, there is an opportunity to meet these characters as their high school selves. The discussion following each story is led by a trained Helper (teacher, family member, therapist or allied professional) or Certified ICONz Provider™ who high lights the main character’s use (or failure to use) the ICONz and how this relates to the eventual outcome. The discussion emphasizes the students’ use of the ICONz in their daily lives. Students provide personal examples of using the ICONz. As further examples, the Helper or Provider describe various situations where they used (or failed to use) the ICONz in their own lives. The impact of seeing a trusted adult use the ICONz greatly facilitates their use by the students.
High School begins with childhood and ends with adulthood. Physical ability and emotional development during these years prepare the way for adult responsibilities and later life. In the stories, the characters in the High School Curriculum experience these changes and respond to expectations of others by using (or failing to use) the ICONz to understand the situation and guide their behavior. At this age, students are able to think about the complexity of other people and life itself in new ways. The story plots and characters easily lead to guided discussion of “big picture topics” which so many adolescents enjoy. Our students consistently relate the social story plots and characters to themselves, acquaintances and others they know well. Our students see that they are not alone in facing their challenges. The stories and discussion provide additional ways of addressing challenges than a student may have thought of on their own. Our students, Helpers and Providers enjoy the stories which are designed to contribute to awareness and appreciation of others.