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Wonderful Book on Autism for Young Children

  • May 7, 2009
  • by
I think "Autism and Me-- Sibling Stories" would be a very good book to use with young children, in either a home or school setting, if you wanted to open up a dialog about Autism. In 32 pages, it presents multiple examples of kids of different backgrounds and genders, all of whom have siblings with some level of autism.

The book always maintains an upbeat attitude, but not at the expense of reality. The children talk about the challenges they and their siblings face. They talk about tantrums, for example, as well how hard it is for some of their brothers or sisters to communicate.

The overriding theme of their stories though is not the problems --they are in kept comfortably in the background-- but instead the strong bond of love and respect that exists between the children. I think the author and photographer did a wonderful job capturing and illuminating the affection. Kudos to Steven Vote, by the way, for capturing that love with the camera. You can see it in every picture.

At 32 pages this book is a nice size for younger children.

I can easily see how this book could be used to open up dialog about autism, what it is, and how it affects families. It's cheerful presentation is likely to settle apprehensions that might arise when the idea of 'difference' is brought up. The book presents various problems kids have likely faced if they have siblings on the spectrum, so they should be able to see that it's not just their family with these problems, that lots of families are just like theirs.

Pam T~
mom and reviewer at BooksForKids-reviews

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review by . July 18, 2009
'Autism and Me' would be an excellent resource for families with one autistic child and one or more non-autistic children. Often children with siblings who have disabilities may have difficulty relating to the sibling or understanding all of the behaviors/symptoms associated with the disability. 'Autism and Me' offers brief stories, written from a child's perspective, of living with an autistic sibling. Each story describes some of the behaviors/symptoms associated with Autism and also offers effective …
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Pam Tee ()
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Member Since: Nov 24, 2008
Last Login: Oct 11, 2012 10:44 AM UTC
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About this book


Grade 4–6—Using photos of family members and the words of children as young as six, Shapiro shows the ups and downs of life with someone who has autism. The youngsters' voices are honest and realistic: "I was kind of embarrassed." "Sometimes I get ticked when Mary Gwen hits and screams." If anything about Jesse changed, "he wouldn't be Jesse anymore, and I would miss the old Jesse." Some of them sound a bit preachy: "You should respect people with autism for who they are." However, the children's emotions ring true, telling what they love about their sibling; the preaching comes from their hearts. This book would be useful in families and in classrooms to help explain both the struggles and the triumphs of living with someone who has this disorder.—Wendy Smith-D'Arezzo, Loyola College, Baltimore, MD
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ISBN-10: 0807504874
ISBN-13: 978-0807504871
Author: Ouisie Shapiro
Genre: Teens
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company
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