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Autism in Your Classroom A General Educator's Guide to Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders Deborah Fein, Ph.D. & Michelle A. Dunn, Ph.D.

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Price: $19.95

Children with autism spectrum disorders are increasingly being educated in inclusive general education classrooms. For optimal results, teachers need to know as much as possible about autism and the teaching methods and modifications that work best for these students. This is a huge undertaking for time-crunched general education teachers, many of whom may never have had a student with autism before. Now teachers can turn to Autism in Your Classroom for the information and guidance they need.

Written by two neuropsychologists with extensive clinical and classroom experience, this new book is a concise, easy-to-read guide developed for primary school teachers (grades K- 6).

Part I provides a complete overview of the types, causes, characteristics, and treatments of autism spectrum disorders. It also explains various secondary characteristics of autism that create challenges for students, such as sensory abnormalities, behavioral issues, and limited social skills and peer interaction.

Part II focuses on the student in the classroom: It covers a variety of strategies to manage learning & behavior, such as:

  • Modifying classwork & homework
  • Helping with language difficulties
  • Using visual strategies
  • Keeping students focused & organized
  • Teaching reading & math
  • Using positive reinforcement & rewards
  • Handling challenging behavior
  • Explaining autism to other students
  • Teaching social skills in the classroom
  • Balancing the needs of typical and special students
Part III features two useful case studies. Both stem from the authors' hands-on work and consultation with teachers, students, and parents. The book concludes with an appendix of frequently asked questions about children with autism asked by educators. 

"This book focuses on the techniques that can be used by classroom teachers in order to assist students with autism spectrum disorders to be successfully integrated into the classroom to optimize their learning opportunities. The authors, both neuropsychologists who have worked extensively in the area of autism, have gathered their experience and best practices to provide basic information on autism and methods for teaching that will optimize the learning experience for each child.

Offering clear, concise information on autism spectrum disorders causes, treatments, and impact on family members, the information is presented in a conversational tone with emphasis on the positive outcomes that can occur with purposeful techniques to aid the autistic child. Written at a professional level, there is an index which redirects the reader to the appropriate definition.

Techniques discussed include the use of visual supports, adapting classroom homework, strategies to improve language, reading and math skills, and handling challenging behavior. Integrating the special needs child is also balanced with the needs of the rest of the members of the class. Special emphasis is placed on attention, memory, organization and motor skills and adaptive techniques to help the austistic child to optimize the learning experience. An inclusive book of resources including websites, books, organizations, and support groups is included. This book offers strategies for teachers as well as family members who have an autistic child to offer specific interventions that would benefit the child both socially and academically."
-CAPHIS Consumer Connection

"The focus of this book, written by pediatric neurophysiologists specializing in autism, is to help teachers better understand autism spectrum disorders and help these students maximize their potential for learning in the classroom. Intended primarily for those teaching children with autism in their classroom, the book is also useful for parents, health professionals, and other educators.

Part One provides a comprehensive overview of current information on autism spectrum disorders, including detailed definitions and associated features (behavioral problems, sensory abnormalities, attendance deficit, motor coordination difficulties and/or impaired social skills). Topics include everything from methods for preparing the student with autism before school begins to measuring success and implementing strategies. Part Two focuses on providing teachers with specific tools and strategies to address each of these areas. The authors continually state that the goal is always to help the child become as independent and responsible as he/she is capable. The importance of communication between all parties is stressed, to ensure consistent implementation of the strategies most effective in optimizing learning and increasing independence.

Interesting case studies of success/failure, myths, and frequently asked questions about autism are included. Thorough reference and resource lists complete this text and include books, websites and related organizations.

This book is easy to read as it is well organized and clearly written--a useful resource for teachers not specifically trained in Autism Spectrum Disorders, but who are expected to effectively teach students with this diagnosis in their classroom."
-Canadian Journal Of Occupational Therapy, Volume 76, number 3, June 2009

"Drs. Fein and Dunn provide a handbook that covers all of the hot topics faced by general educators who have students with autism spectrum disorder in their classrooms. Concepts are presented in a user-friendly way, and a generous list of additional resources is provided."
-Dr. Rebecca Landa, Director, Center for Autism and Related Disorders , Kennedy Krieger Institute, and Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

"There are more children with autism in schools than ever before in the history of American public education. Autism in Your Classroom, gives educators the practical information and guidance they need to support these children with ASDs, or Autism Spectrum Disorders. Autism in your Classroom is a much-needed resource that gives teachers the understanding of the types, causes, characteristics, and treatments of these ASDs. Deftly written by Deborah Fein, Ph.D., a clinical and research neuropsychologist with 35 years of experience and serves as professor of Psychology at the University of Connecticut; and fellow Ph.D. Michelle A. Dunn, an Associate professor of neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine with 25 years of experience. The combined expertise of the two make Autism in Your Classroom invaluable to any educator who would hope to understand and properly handle Autistic students’ special needs."
-The Bookwatch, May 2008

"This very comprehensive guide offers teachers clear explanations of all the components related to the education of students with autism. The authors also provide a thorough overview of how autism affects learning styles."
-Tisha Gonzalez, educational consultant and owner of Building Blox teacher supply store

"A must-read for all teachers. Experts Fein and Dunn take the mystery out of educating children with ASDs by providing comprehensive, practical and user-friendly techniques for the classroom. It will also empower parents to become effective educational advocates for their child."
-Karen Siff Exkorn, MA, author of The Autism Sourcebook: Everything You Need to Know About Diagnosis, Treatment, Coping and Healing--From A Mother Whose Child Recovered 


Part 1: What You Need to Know about Autism Spectrum Disorders

Chapter 1 What is Autism?

Chapter 2 More about Autism Spectrum Disorders

Chapter 3 What Causes Autism Spectrum Disorders?

Chapter 4 The Impact of Autism on the Family

Chapter 5 What Treatments are Used for Children with Autism?

Part 2: The Student in Your Classroom

Chapter 6 Educational Placements

Chapter 7 Getting Started

Chapter 8 Cognition and Motor Issues

Chapter 9 Language Issues

Chapter 10 Academics

Chapter 11 Social Skills

Chapter 12 Troubleshooting Behaviors in the Classroom

Chapter 13 The Balancing Act

Chapter 14 Case Studies of Success and Failure

Chapter 15 Myths and FAQs about Autism




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