As a parent, a teacher and an Aspie herself, Jennifer O'Toole provides the definitive insider's view of Asperger syndrome. She shows how to help children on the spectrum by understanding how they think and by exploiting their special interests to promote learning. Her strategies work because she thinks like the children that she teaches.This exciting book is full of effective and fun ways of engaging with children with Asperger syndrome. Jennifer explains how theory of mind difficulties create the need for concrete forms of communication, and provides original methods to inspire imagination through sensorial experiences. In particular she reveals the untapped power of special interests, showing how to harness these interests to encourage academic, social and emotional growth. Affirming that different doesn't mean defective, this book offers the insight and guidance that parents, educators, and other professionals need to connect with the Asperkids in their life and get them excited about learning.
About the Author
Jennifer Cook O'Toole has Asperger syndrome and is the mother to three young Aspie children. She graduated from Brown University, and attended Columbia University's Graduate School of Social Work. She has previously worked as a social worker, and a teacher in both special needs and mainstream education. She has also served on the Family Advisory Board for Levine Children's Hospital, North Carolina, and regularly gives presentations at hospitals and local universities on special needs parenting. In 2002 she was nominated for Disney's Teacher of the Year Award. More recently, she has been honored with the GRASP (Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership) 2012 Distinguished Spectrumite Medal, as well as the 2012 Temple Grandin Award for "outstanding accomplishment and contribution to [her] family and community". She lives near Charlotte, North Carolina.