Top 10 books on autism

July 25th, 2007

1.Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew

by Ellen Notbohm

List Price: $14.95

Comments from readers:I have read through dozens of books pertaining to Autism and within this one book I found more useful information than anywhere else. This book is not just for parents and therapists, but also for family members adjusting to life with a child who has Autism. It helps you get inside the head of a child with Autism, and understand the struggles and pain these children face every single day.

The ten things the author lays out are simple, but essential in understanding and helping the child. She provides examples in terms that people without Autism can relate to in order to better understand certain behaviors. The recovery process is different for every child, but the information in this book will without a doubt help any family get on the road. Open your heart and read this book to really understand.

2.1001 Great Ideas for Teaching and Raising Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

by Veronica Zysk

List Price: $24.95

Book Description:

In a snappy, can-do format, 1001 Great Ideas for Teaching and Raising Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders offers page after page of try-it-now solutions that have worked for thousands of children grappling with social, sensory, behavioral, and self-care issues, plus many more.

From the Publisher:

*Winner of the 2006 Teachers’ Choice Award!*

Comments from readers:

I have shelves filled with books with ‘how to’ and I have tried them all. My son, Brian now 14, has severe mental retardation, there are very few books for ‘teaching’ children like him. I took a chance on this one, and worth it. Thanx to the notes in the book I no longer try and stop him from bitting his hands, but understadning why, all of us at home started to take notes of when and what happened before and now we focus on the what happens before. This is just one excellent example.

We had a good summer and he has made great progress because of the book. We did projects with him, set real targets and monitored. My 9 year old daughter who is a part of the team helping her 14 year old sibblings, got ideas of things she could do with him and learnt much about not doing ‘for him’.

The instructions for action, and this is what the book spurs you to do ‘act’ are clear and logically. So many times we go on to another ‘intervention’ and when we read the explanation that leads to the action I hear myself thinking, but you know what that is logical. It may say ‘Autism Spectrum’, but it is forall of us who has a child/young adult with moderate to severe intellectural disability.

I am purchasing two extra copies of the book. One to send to school when he starts in another two weeks, the other to my sister who we plan to visit in December. I also chair the National Advisory Board for Persons with Disability here in Jamaica and I am going to recommending this book to all who will listen.

3.Understanding Autism For Dummies (For Dummies (Health & Fitness))

by Stephen Shore, Linda G. Rastelli, and Temple Grandin

List Price: $19.99

Editorial Reviews:

Book Description:

Autism affects more than 1 million children and adults in the United States, and parents may be confused by the behavior of autistic children. This book provides help-and hope-by explaining the differences between various types of autism and delivering the lowdown on behavioral, educational, medical, other interventions. Featuring inspiring autism success stories as well as a list of organizations where people who support those with autism can go for additional help, it offers practical advice on how to educate children as well as insights on helping people with autism use their strengths to maximize their potential in life.

Stephen Shore, EdD (Brookline MA), serves on the board for several autism spectrum-related organizations and he has written Beyond the Wall: Personal Experiences with Autism and Asperger Syndrome (1-931282-00-5) and edited Ask and Tell: Self Advocacy and Disclosure For People on the Autism Spectrum (1-931282-58-7).

Linda G. Rastelli (Middletown, NJ) is a veteran journalist who specializes in health and business.

Temple Grandin, PhD (Fort Collins, CO) is the author of the bestselling Thinking in Pictures (0-679-77289-8) and Emergence: Labeled Autistic (0-446-67182-7).

From the Back Cover:

Identify signs and symptoms for early intervention

Get the right diagnosis and customized treatment plan for your loved one or yourself

This reassuring guide explains the symptoms of autism, how it’s diagnosed, and the current options for treatment. You’ll get helpful information on the latest in genetic and biomedical research, as well as coverage of special-needs financial planning, legal rights for education, and handling issues unique to adults with autism.

Discover how to

Find and work with autism specialists

Create and help manage an effective educational plan for your child

Enhance communication and social skills

Evaluate treatment options

Explore other helpful autism resources

Comments from readers:

Over the past three years since we began to suspect my grandson was autistic, I have accumulated a large library on the subject. Many of the books covered or advocated specific types of treatment, or information on school special education, or finances and autism, or possible causes, or personal success stories or even stories of acceptance when success didn’t happen. This book covers them all, and more, and does it well. I’m getting another copy for my son and daughter-in-law, although by now they are experts, not dummies.. This is a really EXCELLENT contribution to the available literature on this increasingly common developmental condition. Don’t miss it!

4.Preparing for Life: The Complete Guide for Transitioning to Adulthood for Those with Autism and Asperger’s Syndrome

by Jed Baker

List Price: $34.95

Book Description:

A comprehensive resource for students on the autism spectrum preparing for life after high school, best-selling author/counselor Dr. Jed Baker offers “life skills training” on subjects such as non-verbal cues, body language, dealing with anger, frustration and anxiety, as well as building and maintaining friendships, roommates, and intimate relationships. He focuses on conversational and employment skills, ways to balance work/school with family demands, and problematic areas such as finances, emergencies and transportation matters. The assessment tools he provides for parents and the analysis of the laws that provide accommodations to adults with disabilities are critical for success in life after high school.

From the Author:

“It is my philosophy that the skills in this book and others do not represent a model of social correctness. They are, however, ideas of how to behave that may help students reach their own goals. . . . The message is, don’t alter the uniqueness that makes you special in so many great ways-just add to what you can do.” – Dr. Jed Baker

Comments from readers:

This book is truly a Godsend. It is ideal for people on the autism/Asperger’s spectrum who are approaching adulthood. Dr. Baker is plainly a gifted man and this book is proof positive of his logical vision. He is also a brilliant navigator who leads expeditions for people on the a/A spectrum into understanding the neurotypical world and issues in it.

I like the way he organizes assets and challenges by putting them into categories, e.g. work, social, etc. Dr. Baker includes some good practical techniques for handling difficult emotions. His advice on dating and employment issues is something no adult on the spectrum should go without reading. If you are an adult on the spectrum, please make this book your best friend.

5.My Friend with Autism: A Coloring Book for Peers and Siblings

by Beverly Bishop

List Price: $9.95

Book Description:

Created as a coloring book with a surprising educational twist, My Friend with Autism actually is written for anyone who comes in contact with an autistic child, including young classmates, neighbors, church members, and professionals. The book explains in two ways what autism is and how the behavior of autistic children can be different: children enjoy the coloring book which is packed with the message; others will find the “Notes for Adults” in the back of the book thought-provoking and a succinct definition of the autism spectrum. Teachers will discover this book invaluable because of its capability to foster integration of autistic children into the student group.

Comments from readers:

This book does a wonderful service in describing autism and its related spectrum condition, Asperger’s. The gently written text; the clear explanations and the child friendly form of coloring in the pictures provides a safe ground in exploring spectrum behaviors from a child’s point of view. How I wish I had owned this book when I was a child!

This is a must-have for educators, parents and persons in related fields who work with people who are on the spectrum. This book is really for everybody because it opens new doors and provides a fresh approach in discussing spectrum behaviors.

6.The Autism Acceptance Book: Being a Friend to Someone With Autism

by Ellen Sabin

List Price: $17.95

Book Description:

The Autism Acceptance Book is an interactive, educational, and character-building book that introduces children to the challenges faced by people with autism while also supporting their personal journey toward appreciating and respecting people’s differences.

This book offers educational information, conversation-starters, and engaging exercises that invite children to “walk in someone else’s shoes” as they learn to treat others the same ways they would like to be treated themselves.

From the Publisher:

This book is much more than a book that teaches children about autism. It uses informative narrative and engaging activities to help them develop understanding, compassion, and appreciation for people different from themselves. It lets them use their imagination and journal exercises to more fully comprehend some of the challenges people with autism might face. It also empowers children by helping them understand the power of their actions and how they can be a good friend to others.

This book is the third in a refreshing and unique series by author Ellen Sabin. Her other books include The Giving Book: Open the Door to a Lifetime of Giving and The Hero Book: Learning Lessons From the People You Admire.

Comments from readers:

This is a wonderful, engaging, valuable book- thoughtful without being preachy, direct while being engaging and conversational. I would highly recommend this book as a gift and guide to any child who is coming into contact with people with autism for the first time (or anything that marks someone as different than their young peers). The book strikes, in my view, just the right tone to give a young person insight into the needs and differences of a person with autism, without resorting to or promoting condescension or pity toward people with differences.

7.Ten Things Your Student with Autism Wishes You


by Ellen Notbohm

List Price: $14.95


“Ellen provides an excellent perspective for those involved with educating children on the autism spectrum. Her work is practical, concise and brimming with common sense. I particularly applaud her emphasis on raising our expectations for autistic learners and getting to know children with autism as people, rather than diagnoses or problems.”

Book Description:

Ellen Notbohm’s first book, Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew, was a shot heard throughout the worldwide autism community, branded by readers as “required reading for all social service workers, teachers and relatives of children with autism.” Now, for the teacher in all of us comes Ten Things Your Student with Autism Wishes You Knew. The unique perspective of a child’s voice is back to help us understand the thinking patterns that guide their actions, shape an environment conducive to their learning style, and communicate with them in meaningful ways. Ten Things Your Student with Autism Wishes You Knew affirms that autism imposes no inherent upper limits on achievement, that both teacher and child “can do it.” It’s the game plan every educator, parent, or family member needs to make the most of every “teaching moment” in the life of these children we love.

Comments from readers:

This is the best book I have ever read on the topic and believe me I have read hundreds!! I am currently reading this book with my therapy team and paraprofessionals in my classroom as a book club on a weekly basis to give us a new perspective. Definite read for anyone working in this field and for parents too! Wish some of my parents would read it so they would understand that we are all on the same team.

8.Thinking in Pictures, Expanded Edition: My Life with Autism

by Temple Grandin

List Price: $13.95


“I hardly know what to say about this remarkable book. . . It provides a way to understand the many kinds of sentience, human and animal, that adorn the earth.” -Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, author of The Hidden Life of Dogs

“There are innumerable astounding facets to this remarkable book. . . . Displaying uncanny powers of observation . . . [Temple Grandin] charts the differences between her life and the lives of those who think in words.” -The Philadelphia Inquirer

“A uniquely fascinating view not just of autism but of animal-and human-thinking and feeling, [providing] insights that can only be called wisdom.”

-Deborah Tannen, author of You Just Don’t Understand

Book Description:

Temple Grandin, Ph.D., is a gifted animal scientist who has designed one third of all the livestock-handling facilities in the United States. She also lectures widely on autism-because Temple Grandin is autistic, a woman who thinks, feels, and experiences the world in ways that are incomprehensible to the rest of us.

In this unprecedented book, Grandin delivers a report from the country of autism. Writing from the dual perspectives of a scientist and an autistic person, she tells us how that country is experienced by its inhabitants and how she managed to breach its boundaries to function in the outside world. What emerges in Thinking in Pictures is the document of an extraordinary human being, one who, in gracefully and lucidly bridging the gulf between her condition and our own, sheds light on the riddle of our common identity.

Comments from readers:

Whether you know anyone with Asperger’s or not, this book will enlighten and expand your thinking about how minds work and what it means to be human. As in most areas, most people assume that other people think and perceive the same way that they do, and that this is the “only right way to do it.” But when everyone thinks the same way, break-through thinking is almost impossible.

Reading this book I wondered if, without the awe-inspiring differences, we would have ever moved out of mud huts. It seems to me that the lessons stretch far beyond what it means to have Aspergers, although learning what that means is an incredible gift.

We need to treat our differences with awe, wonder and respect and recognize how people who are “differently wired” have helped to shape our world.

9.A Is for Autism F Is for Friend: A Kid’s Book for Making Friends with a Child Who Has Autism

by Joanna L. Keating-Velasco

List Price: $13.95

Product Description:

A Is for Autism, F Is for Friend provides a unique glimpse of life from the perspective of a child who has severe autism. It is told through the voice of Chelsea, an 11-year-old girl, who has severe autism. Chelsea sees kids on the playground and at the park and wants to get to know them, but social interaction can be tricky for her. As Chelsea explains some of her behaviors and challenges, she compares them with issues that all kids face. By demystifying her autism, she underscores the many things she and her schoolmates have in common, prompting a typical child to think, Hey, I experience that, too! Giving Chelsea a voice provides a rare insight into what a child with autism faces daily. Chelsea discusses issues of eye contact and explains echolalia. Chelsea cheerfully shows us that if we look closely, we are sometimes more similar than different. She brings a fun and clear voice for children who cannot articulate the challenges that autism presents. A Is for Autism, F Is for Friend provides an enjoyable discussion-oriented format for teaching our youth about autism.

About the Author:

JOANNA KEATING-VELASCO lives in Placentia in Orange County, California. She is married and has one daughter. Joanna has a degree in business administration. She enjoys trying to understand the unique qualities of children with autism and has worked as an instructional aide (independence facilitator) for seven years in programs for children, teens and adults with autism.

Comments from readers:

Eventhough this book is geared towards a younger age group, I felt it was an insightful book for adults. The book enables you to see things through the eyes of the main character “Chelsea” to better understand her feelings and the thought processes behind her actions. Definitely well written for the target audience.

I understand the author is in the process of writing another book. I look forward to reading her future works!

10.Everybody Is Different: A Book for Young People Who Have Brothers or Sisters With Autism

by Fiona Bleach

List Price: $9.95

Book Description:

This book is different! It is specially designed to give answers to the many questions of brothers and sisters of young people on the autistic spectrum. As well as explaining the characteristics of autism, it is full of helpful suggestions for making family life more comfortable for everyone concerned.

About the Author:

Fiona Bleach, the author, is an art therapist who has worked for many years at the Sybil Elgar School. She has real insight into living and working with people with autistic spectrum disorders and her many illustrations make this a warm and accessible book.

Comments from readers:

This is an excellent teaching tool that paves the way towards acceptance of persons who display autistic behavior. Autism and its related neurobiological condition, Asperger’s are spectrum conditions. Common spectrum behaviors include a myriad of sensory issues such as strong aversions for loud noises; strong reactions to certain smells and tastes and distinctive speaking styles. Many spectrum behaviors overlap and Asperger’s, while considered at the higher end of the autism spectrum does indeed share common neuro-sensory ground with autism.

This book does a heroic job in explaining and addressing these issues to young children. It is a good way of empowering children on and off the spectrum with knowledge that will in turn pave the way to greater acceptance.

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