Teaching Literacy to Students with Autism
A Land We Can Share
Special Education
The how and why of teaching literacy skills to children with autism
68554 978-1-55766-855-4
2008 248
Available Stock

Teachers are going to love this book! Passionate and practical, it moves beyond "sight words" and other functional literacy skills and provides the know-how for bringing quality, meaningful literacy instruction to students with autism. Authored by respected, dynamic scholars in autism and literacy, the book breaks new ground as it focuses specifically on ways in which educators can improve literacy outcomes for students with autism spectrum disorders in Grades K–12 classrooms.

Teachers will learn:

  • research-based practices in reading and writing instruction, including those consistent with the recommendations of Reading First

  • ideas for planning lessons, differentiating instruction, and designing a classroom environment that promotes literacy learning while addressing the individual needs of learners with autism
  • techniques for assessing students who do not or cannot show their literacy learning in traditional ways due to communication or learning differences

  • strategies for including students with autism in a wide range of classroom literacy activities

  • teaching tips from the words and experiences of people with autism spectrum labels and from the authors' own extensive classroom experience

This guidebook brings cutting-edge literacy concepts to special educators who are already familiar with autism but may not have specific training in teaching reading skills and is an essential "literacy meets autism" primer for general educators and reading specialists. For all readers, the book underscores the ways in which literacy can help every learner achieve a more fulfilling, rich, and inclusive academic life."

About the Authors
Douglas Biklen
Angela Notari-Syverson

  1. What Is Autism?

  2. What Is Literacy?

  3. Promoting Literacy Development in Inclusive Classrooms

  4. Assessing Literacy Learning

  5. Focus on Reading

  6. Focus on Writing and Representation

  7. Literacy Learning for Students with Significant Disabilities: Yes, Those Students, Too
Literary and Film References
Recommended Reading
Recommended Web Sites on Literacy, Differentiated Instruction, and Disability


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: CHOICE - September 1, 2008
"May indeed revolutionize the way educators teach literacy to autistic students, regardless of the severity of autism and apparent capability of each individual."
: Positively Autism - August 1, 2008
"A much needed and essential guide for any teacher of students on the spectrum."
: Education Review - July 25, 2008
"Readers will be inspired and instructed by this book….It should prove to be an important resource for students and teachers looking for strategies to use with their own students"
A. James, Midwest Book Review - April 25, 2008
"Superbly co-written, organized and presented, "A Land We Can Share" is thoroughly user-friendly and should be considered essential reading for all teachers at the primary and secondary levels having to work with autistic students within a classroom environment."
: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders - March 29, 2008
"A comprehensive overview…Contextualiz[es] our current knowledge in the broader framework of teaching literacy to all-both typically developing and those with special needs-children in the US."
: Autism Asperger's Digest - February 12, 2008
"A book that will change the face of inclusion...The authors give us an insider's view into what successful inclusion looks like, brilliantly showing us that it is a reachable goal."
Barry Prizant, Adjunct Professor, Center for the Study of Human Development, Brown University - August 29, 2007
"A book we all must share for promoting literacy development of students with ASD. Respectful, insightful, engaging and focused on strengths rather than weaknesses."
Stephen Shore, author and consultant on matters pertaining to the autism spectrum; Board of Directors for the Autism Society of America, the Asperger's Association of New England, and MAAP Services - August 7, 2007
Jam–packed with easy to implement and practical solutions for addressing some of the most challenging situations facing those teaching literacy to students on the autism spectrum at all levels.
Monica Delano, University of Louisville - August 6, 2007
"A dynamic text filled with practical examples that will motivate and inspire readers to view all individuals as capable, successful literacy learners."
Morton Gernsbacher, Vilas Research Professor and Sir Frederick Bartlett Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison - August 6, 2007
"Literacy is a right of every individual in our society. Through creativity, accommodation, respect, and unconventionality, Kluth and Chandler-Olcott demonstrate how to enable that right."
Liane Holliday Willey, author of Pretending to be Normal: Living with Asperger's Syndrome & Asperger Syndrome in the Family: Redefining Normal - August 1, 2007
"Finally! An entire book on autism and literacy. [This] is one of the most important books in autism education I have ever had the pleasure of reading."
Kelly Whalon, Assistant Professor of Special Education, The College of William and Mary - July 31, 2007
"Informative and engaging . . . provide[s] educators with inspiring, practical, strengths–based instructional recommendations to build literacy skills."
Curt Dudley-Marling, Professor of Education, Lynch School of Education, Boston College - July 31, 2007
"An accessible, well-researched text that respects the competence of students with autism and the teachers who work with them."
Chris Kliewer, Professor of Special Education, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA - July 31, 2007
Not only a treatise describing literate possibility for all students, but also a powerful meditation on rethinking the very nature of autism . . . will dramatically impact classroom instructional practices and the underlying educational theory.
Lynn Koegel, Clinical Director, Koegel Autism Center, University of California, Santa Barbara - July 31, 2007
"Literacy is such an important, and often neglected, area for children with autism. This book is filled with great ideas and suggestions for making literacy a reality for children with autism."
Chris Kliewer, Professor of Special Education, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, IA - July 30, 2007
"Not only a treatise describing literate possibility for all students, but also a powerful meditation on rethinking the very nature of autism . . . will dramatically impact classroom instructional practices and the underlying educational theory."
Anne Donnellan, Professor, School of Leadership and Education Sciences, and Director, USD Autism Institute, University of San Diego - July 23, 2007
"You're going to love this book! It offers much needed practical insights into reading for individuals with significant developmental differences."
Patrick Schwarz, Professor and Chair, Diversity in Learning & Development Department, National-Louis University, Chicago - July 6, 2007
Demolishes the great wall of exclusion that has often kept learners with autism segregated from literacy, reading, and language arts activities, the final frontier of inclusion. It is a must!
Douglas Fisher, Professor of Language and Literacy Education, San Diego State University and Co-Director, Center for Advancement of Reading, California State University Chancellor's Office - June 26, 2007
Delivers on a promise - ensuring that students with autism become literate citizens who use their knowledge of language to participate in real lives.