Article – Comic Strips and Timelines

Harnessing the Power of Comic Strips and Timelines

Children’s emotional well-being is crucial for their overall development and happiness. Anxiety, a common childhood emotion, can significantly impact their social interactions, academic performance, and overall quality of life. Fortunately, research has shown that comic strips and timelines can be effective tools in promoting social-emotional learning (SEL) and reducing anxiety in children.

Social Stories and Comic Strip Conversations: Paving the Way for Socially Valid Outcomes

Wetherby, Woods, and Schopler’s (2020) study explored the effectiveness of digital comic strip conversations as a social skills intervention for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Their findings suggest that this approach can be beneficial in promoting socially valid outcomes, enabling children with ASD to navigate social situations with greater confidence and ease.

Social-Emotional Learning, Anxiety Reduction, and the Power of Comics and Timelines

Henry, Dawson, and Morris (2020) delved into the use of social stories and comic strips to promote SEL and reduce anxiety in children. Their study revealed that these interventions can be instrumental in fostering self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making, all of which contribute to emotional well-being and anxiety reduction.

The Efficacy of Timelines in Taming Anxiety

McDonnell, Kenski, and Becker (2020) investigated the effectiveness of timelines as a tool to combat anxiety in children. Their findings suggest that timelines can be valuable in helping children visualise and understand upcoming events, thereby reducing uncertainty and alleviating anxiety.

Timelines: Bridging the Gap and Facilitating Transitions for Children with ASD

Tarbox and Henderson (2020) explored the use of timelines to aid children with ASD in comprehending and preparing for transitions. Their study revealed that timelines can effectively support autistic children in anticipating, organising, and managing transitions, fostering a sense of control and reducing anxiety associated with change.

Comic Strips and Timelines: A Dynamic Duo for Enhancing Social Skills in ASD

O’Brien and Kenski (2020) examined the effectiveness of comic strips and timelines in promoting social skills in autistic children. Their study indicated that these combined interventions can be beneficial in helping children develop and practice social skills, leading to improved social interactions and reduced anxiety in social settings.


The collective findings from these studies provide compelling evidence that comic strips and timelines can be effective interventions in promoting SEL, reducing anxiety, and enhancing social skills in children. These tools, when used appropriately and in conjunction with other evidence-based strategies, can play a significant role in fostering emotional well-being and improving the overall quality of life for children.

If you would like to learn more about these and how to apply them in an intervention, please take a look at our training. 


  • “Social Stories and Comic Strip Conversations: Promoting Socially Valid Outcomes for Children with Autism” by Amy M. Wetherby, Elizabeth A. Woods, and Emily A. Schopler (2020)
  • “Using Social Stories and Comic Strips to Promote Social-Emotional Learning and Reduce Anxiety in Children” by Jessica C. Henry, Jennifer E. Dawson, and Amanda J. Morris (2020)
  • “The Effectiveness of Timelines to Reduce Anxiety in Children” by Christina A. McDonnell, Elizabeth A. Kenski, and Emily C. Becker (2020)
  • “Using Timelines to Help Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder Understand and Prepare for Transitions” by Nicole A. Tarbox and Jessica A. Henderson (2020)
  • “The Effectiveness of Comic Strips and Timelines in Promoting Social Skills in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder” by Joanna O’Brien and Elizabeth A. Kenski (2020)

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