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My Friend Has Autism

Title: My Friend Has Autism

Author: Amanda Doering Tourville

Description: A delightful story of friendship along with some objective information to help explain autism to children. This book is not typical of the books we usually review, but we wanted to let people know that it is available and written beautifully. As we know, autism is a spectrum disorder and the child described in this book is at one end of that spectrum, so it is not a universal explanation, but it does express universal themes of the pure acceptance of a true friend. The “teachable information” (e.g., “Did you know? That children with autism have trouble communicating…”) is presented in a bubble format which is imbedded in a sweet story of two friends sharing an interest. Therefore (if read aloud), the reader has the choice to include the “Did you know?” bubbles or not.

Goals/ objectives:
• Introduction of some common characteristics of autism to children
• Enhance understanding that difference is just that… different
• Reminder that similarities are the “most important thing”
• Discussion of the qualities of true friendship

Why I like this story: It is written from a child’s perspective and it is so heartwarming.

This book is just one in a series of books entitles Friends with Disabilities. When reading it, I was reminded of a beautiful blog post written by mother and blogger, Mom – Not Otherwise Specified. She educates her child’s class about autism through the use of a very accessible metaphor. You can read it here.

Submitted by Karen S Head M.S. CCC-SLP