Thursday, April 11, 2013

National Autism Awareness Month

Did you know that April is National Autism Awareness Month? It was started in the 1970s to bring awareness to Autism.

The Autism Society defines autism as a "complex neurodevelopmental disability" that usual appears in a child's first 2 years. It affects their ability to interact and communicate with others. Autism is a "spectrum disorder" which means that it affects people differently and to different degrees. Currently 1 in 110 Americans are being diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum.

National Autism Awareness Month only lasts for April, but our resources are here for families every month of the year.

  • MAGAZINES. We subscribe to Autism Asperger's Digest and Autism Spectrum Quarterly. Find them in the Parenting Collection.
  • ADAPTED BOOKS. Titles are located in the Parenting Collection. These little known treasures are traditional books that have been modified with picture communication for children to have been understanding of what's happening in the story. The pages are laminated and in a binder to make it easier for them to hold, and there are textured foam "fluffers" that separate the pages to make it easier for them to turn the pages.
  • AUTISM RESOURCE CENTER. This wiki, which the library started, is a site for parents or caregivers where you can find links for local resources such as dentists, family support, or therapists. You can find the link to the wiki here.
  • RAINBOW TIME. Our monthly program with Rainbow Animal Assisted Therapy where trained therapy dogs help children work on motor skills, interaction, and communication. The children interact with the wonderful aides and dog handlers, while their parents get a chance to check out the library's collection.
  • OTHER RESOURCES. We have a copy of Boardmaker that you can use on your computer to make picture communications like the ones your child might use in the classroom. 

If you are a parent of a child who has autism and want to suggest a book for our collection or an area resource for our wiki, please feel free to email us, call us at 847.376.2839, or stop by and talk to us at the 2nd floor information desk the next time you're in.

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