Magazine Feature

Toolkit for "A New Frame of Mind"

This toolkit for "A New Frame of Mind" provides a curated list of resources—authors, experts, websites—related to autism and the neurodiversity movement. 


Use this toolkit to plan for how you, your colleagues and your students will learn more about autism and advocate for more inclusive classrooms and schools.


Essential Questions 

  1. Why is it important to read about and study a range of materials about working with students on the autism spectrum?
  2. What supports do educators need to adopt a more asset-based approach to working with autistic students?


Free Resources

  • Autistic Self Advocacy Network offers a library of resources including book lists, advocacy tools and even a section on improving sexual health care for patients with disabilities. 
  • Educate Autism: Tools to Help You Teach provides free educational resources and teaching materials to support people who may have a child, or are teaching a child, with a learning difficulty—focusing primarily on children on the Autism Spectrum. 
  • "The Autism Speaks '100 Day Kit for Newly Diagnosed Families of Young Children' was created specifically for families of children ages 4 and under to make the best possible use of the 100 days following their child's diagnosis of autism."


Books and Publications

Loud Hands: Autistic People, Speaking by Julia Bascom

Ido in Autismland: Climbing Out of Autism’s Silent Prison by Ido Kedar

In a Different Key by John Donvan and Caren Zucker

NeuroTribes by Steve Silberman 


Related Resources From Teaching Tolerance

Understanding Disabilities: Middle Grades 

Understanding Disabilities: High School 

Meeting Mathew 


Classroom Ideas

Integrate books by or about young people who are autistic into your efforts to teach more diverse literature. Some popular titles include Tacos Anyone? by Marvie Ellis (K-2), Different Like Me by Jennifer Elder (3-5), Mockingbird, by Kathryn Erskine (6-8) and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (9-12). Review the following books lists for more titles and summaries:

7 of Our Favorite Middle Grade Books Featuring Characters On the Autism Spectrum 

Autism Books - Children’s Fiction

11 Books Featuring Characters on the Autism Spectrum 

Five Young [Adult] Fiction Books Featuring Characters with Autism


Professional Development Ideas

Read these blogs and then reflect on your own attitudes and assumptions about working with students with autism.

Identity-First Language

12 Things I’d Like Teachers to Understand about Autism

Organize a committee of colleagues, students and families to plan World Autism Day at your school.