Allison Hay

Allison Hay is a Music Therapist at St.Amant. She graduated with an after-degree in Music Therapy from the Canadian Mennonite University in 2010. In 2017, she traveled to Toronto to complete her training in Neurologic Music Therapy. She specializes in working with adults with Developmental Disabilities and Autism. Allison is also a mom, a lover of the outdoors and she can’t stop making kombucha!


Jackie Swirsky 

Jackie is a Speech Language Pathologist at St.Amant.  She graduated with a Master of Speech Language Pathology from the University of Alberta in 2004.  She currently provides services to adults with Developmental Disabilities and Autism with a focus in the areas of Augmentative Alternative Communication (AAC) and Dysphagia.  Jackie is also a mom, children’s book author and public speaker on the subject of gender diversity.


Julianne Panthei 

After working for several years in the Arts Julie switched career paths returning to school, completing her degree  In Human Development and Psychology and later, in Applied Behaviour Analysis (Autism).  She has worked at St.Amant in the Day Program and School and is currently the Clinical Assistant in the Speech Language Department.  Julie is a cat mom/butler and an Ultimate Frisbee junkie.


Session: “Tune-ing” Social Stories – the power of stories and music to affect meaningful social connections and interactions

Join us for a fun and engaging workshop using examples from our own clinical experience. You will be motivated and inspired watching social stories come to life using real life videos and listening to audio songs created by Clinical Services clinicians. Not only will you learn about the power of social stories, you will walk away with the confidence to create a person centered, musical story of your own.

Social stories are a social learning tool that supports the safe and meaningful exchange of information between people. They often describe a situation relevant to social cues, other’s perspectives, and suggest appropriate responses. While music is often used within a social story, there lacks a clear guideline when considering when/how to use music effectively.  As Hans Christian Andersen said, “Where words fail, music speaks”.

In this 2-part workshop, participants will not only learn the basics of creating social stories but will also assist in the creation of a sample social story using iMovie on an iPad.  Participants are encouraged to bring their own devices in order to try making their own social story but this is not a requirement to participate. Only those who participate in Part 1 will be eligible to attend Part 2.