10 Great Autism Books for Teachers and Parents

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For those of you keen on learning about autism spectrum disorder the collection below is a good place to start with. It features some notable works and research studies that will help you develop a better understanding of what autism is all about and what you can do to enhance the learning experiences of students and kids with autism.

Some of these books are first-hand stories and autobiographies of people dealing with autism and how they managed to positively shape their life and the life of those around them. (See links below).'

Books on Autism

1- Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger’s, by John Elder Robison

‘Ever since he was young, John Robison longed to connect with other people, but by the time he was a teenager, his odd habits—an inclination to blurt out non sequiturs, avoid eye contact, dismantle radios, and dig five-foot holes (and stick his younger brother, Augusten Burroughs, in them)—had earned him the label “social deviant.” 

It was not until he was forty that he was diagnosed with a form of autism called Asperger’s syndrome. That understanding transformed the way he saw himself—and the world. A born storyteller, Robison has written a moving, darkly funny memoir about a life that has taken him from developing exploding guitars for KISS to building a family of his own. It’s a strange, sly, indelible account—sometimes alien yet always deeply human.’

2- Louder Than Words: A Mother's Journey in Healing Autism, by Jenny McCarthy

‘ Louder Than Words follows Jenny as she discovered an intense combination of behavioral therapy, diet, and supplements that became the key to saving Evan from autism. Her story sheds much-needed light on autism through her own heartbreak, struggle, and ultimately hopeful example of how a parent can shape a child's life and happiness.’

3- NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity, by Steve Silberman (author),  Oliver Sacks (Foreword)

‘Going back to the earliest days of autism research and chronicling the brave and lonely journey of autistic people and their families through the decades, Silberman provides long-sought solutions to the autism puzzle, while mapping out a path for our society toward a more humane world in which people with learning differences and those who love them have access to the resources they need to live happier, healthier, more secure, and more meaningful lives.’

4- Thinking in Pictures, Expanded Edition: My Life with Autism , by Temple Grandin (Author), Oliver Sacks (Foreword)

‘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.’

5- The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum, by Temple Grandin (Author), Richard Panek

‘Weaving her own experience with remarkable new discoveries, Grandin introduces the neuroimaging advances and genetic research that link brain science to behavior, even sharing her own brain scan to show us which anomalies might explain common symptoms. We meet the scientists and self-advocates who are exploring innovative theories of what causes autism and how we can diagnose and best treat it.’

6- Ido in Autismland: Climbing Out of Autism's Silent Prison , by Ido Kedar (Author)

‘Ido in Autismland opens a window into non-verbal autism through dozens of short, autobiographical essays each offering new insights into autism symptoms, effective and ineffective treatments and the inner emotional life of a severely autistic boy. In his pithy essays, author Ido Kedar, a brilliant sixteen year old with autism, challenges what he believes are misconceptions in many theories that dominate autism treatment today while he simultaneously chronicles his personal growth in his struggles to overcome his limitations.’

7- Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism, by Barry M. Prizant

‘Autism therapy typically focuses on ridding individuals of “autistic” symptoms such as difficulties interacting socially, problems in communicating, sensory challenges, and repetitive behavior patterns. Now Dr. Barry M. Prizant offers a new and compelling paradigm: the most successful approaches to autism don’t aim at fixing a person by eliminating symptoms, but rather seeking to understand the individual’s experience and what underlies the behavior.’

8- How Can I Talk If My Lips Don't Move?: Inside My Autistic Mind, by Tito Rajarshi Mukhopadhyay

‘An astounding new work by the author of The Mind Tree that offers a rare insight into the autistic mind and how it thinks, sees, and reacts to the world. When he was three years old, Tito was diagnosed as severely autistic, but his remarkable mother, Soma, determined that he would overcome the “problem” by teaching him to read and write. The result was that between the ages of eight and eleven he wrote stories and poems of exquisite beauty, which Dr. Oliver Sacks called “amazing and shocking.” Their eloquence gave lie to all our assumptions about autism.’

9- In a Different Key: The Story of Autism

‘Nearly seventy-five years ago, Donald Triplett of Forest, Mississippi, became the first child diagnosed with autism. Beginning with his family’s odyssey, In a Different Key tells the extraordinary story of this often misunderstood condition, and of the civil rights battles waged by the families of those who have it. Unfolding over decades, it is a beautifully rendered history of ordinary people determined to secure a place in the world for those with autism’

10- Life with an Autistic Son, by B's Dad

‘This book is for anyone starting out on a pathway with their child that they did not expect. It’s also for people who, like me, are a little further down that road but still learning, still asking questions and still getting it wrong sometimes. You are not alone.’

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