Autism Spectrum Disorder Training Strategies / Autism Strategies

“The Incredible 5-Point Scale”

What it is: A method for teachers or parents of children who need help understanding emotions and their effects

Who it’s for: Students with Autism or students who have a difficult time understanding, classifying, or controlling their emotions

What you’ll need: All materials can be found on

This strategy was presented to me in my recent Programming Strategies for Autism Spectrum Disorders Training and I’ve had successful results with it.

5_point_scale_poster1Incredible Scale 5 Primary

This scale was created by Kari Dunn Buron which has helped some of my students understand their emotions and how to identify them when they are occurring. In summary, it allows you to talk with you student and classify their various moods and categorize them onto a 5 point scale. Together you determine what each point on the scale looks like for the student; how they act when they are at a 1 and how you should react, how they act when they are at a 2 and how you should react etc. Once the student understands what their behavior looks like according to the scale, it can be referenced to them when necessary. “OK right now you are at a 3, let’s try to work our way back down to a 1.” It really helps Autistic students form a visual of their emotions and associated actions. One of my students did not understand the difference between mad and happy within himself before this scale, and now he does!

I hope this helps you!

-Miss S.

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