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The Conversation Train


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Table of Contents

Introduction. Promote Skill Generalization Using the Train Imagery. Using the Worksheets. Section One: The Conversation Train. Part One: Starting a Conversation. Part Two: Taking Turns in Conversation. Part Three: Staying On Track. Part Four: Changing Topics. Part Five: Ending the Conversation. Part Six: Putting it All Together. Section Two: The Conversation Train Worksheets. What Do the Different Parts of the Train Mean? Hello Words, How Are You Words, Switch Track Words and Goodbye Words. Fix the Mixed-Up Conversation. Things You Love Can Make You Go Off Track. People You Know and What They Like Talking About. People You Know and What You Both Like Talking About. The Two-Person, On-Track Worksheet. Choosing the Right Words with Different People. Keeping Track of Staying on Track. Conversation Train Coloring Pages.

Promotional Information

The rules of conversation explained with trains!

About the Author

Joel Shaul is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who specialises in ASDs. Through his organisation, Autism Teaching Strategies, he provides workshops on social skills teaching and mental health treatment methods. He is also co-creator of Ryuu social skills products. He provides clinical and consultation services at The Watson Institute of Sewickley, PA. Joel's website can be found at www.autismteachingstrategies.com.


This is a really clever and helpful book aimed at giving autistic children a better understanding of how everyday conversations work, using the analogy of a steam train... using illustrations of the freight wagons, the author shows how important turn-taking is in conversation... It's very appealingly done, and there are photocopiable worksheets at the back for reinforcement and assessment. This is a very high-quality resource, confidently recommended. -- ACHUKA Reviews
The Conversation Train: A Visual Approach to Conversation for Children on the Autism Spectrum is a unique, one of a kind book that cleverly uses a train analogy for teaching conversation... at the end of the book there is a section of worksheets for the child to complete that can be copies... I would love to see this book in every library and elementary school class room because so many now do include children with autism. -- Horizons - Autism Society of Michigan Quarterly Newsletter
I really enjoyed how the book breaks down each element of a conversation, has several examples and then has visuals to help support the child's own conversations. I can see how practical a book like this would be for a verbal child who is struggling with how to enter, maintain and end a conversation. -- eyes on autism (Australia)
This author, an American Clinical Social Worker who specializes in Autistic Spectrum Disorder, uses the metaphor of a train to help children who find conversation difficult to gain control over the conventions... This is an interesting, imaginative and well illustrated guide for anyone seeking to help a young person with ASD to feel more confident when sharing a conversation. -- The School Librarian (SL)
Using a steam freight train as a metaphor, this picture book is aimed at helping children on the autistic spectrum learn conversational skills... The book is a simple concept in simple sentences that will be reasonably easily grasped b y children who find holding conversations difficult, and the pictures of the train will hold interest. This is a marvelous tool in the autistic spectrum world, and will provide fun as well as learning. -- Healthy Books blog

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