Kids are a lot of things, but understanding isn't always one of them. Even if your child is innately empathetic, it may still be hard for them to understand why their friend, classmate, sibling or acquaintance who has been diagnosed with a form of autism, acts the way they do. As parents, it's your job to help your kids relate and be kind to those who are different than them, even in especially difficult cases. Children's books that help kids understand autism can be a great tool for parents, teachers, and kids alike to do just that.
All of these books are written for children, specifically designed to demystify behaviors associated with autism and break down how an autistic child sees the world around them in terms anyone can relate to and understand. From dealing with big, overwhelming feelings, to having social anxiety, to resisting authority, these books tackle large issues that anyone close to an autistic child will witness.
Furthermore, if your child has autism, these books can be very beneficial too— helping them better see what goes on inside them and teaching them how to relate with the world around them.
It's easy to tell your child to befriend the child who doesn't fit in easily, but it's another thing to read them books about it and give them tangible examples of how to make that a reality.
4'Different Like Me' by Jennifer Elder
In Different Like Me, an 8-year-old boy tells readers about famous figures throughout history who, just like him, found it difficult to fit in because of autism. From Einstein to Louis Carroll, this book highlights the amazing achievements of people throughout history who also had a form of autism.
10'Ben Has Autism. Ben Is Awesome' by Meredith Zolty
Written by the mother of a son with PDD-NOS (Pervasive Developmental Disorder-Not Otherwise Specified), Ben Has Autism, Ben is Awesome tells the story of Ben through the eyes of a child, making it easy for children to empathize and better understand the world of a child with autism.