Socially Including Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Early Elementary Classrooms: A Children’s Literature Kit

Because of the increasing prevalence of autism and the push for the inclusion of students with disabilities in the general education setting, there are a growing number of students with autism being included in general education classrooms. Despite their best intentions, many of these inclusive school programs do not ensure that students with autism are not being socially included. Due to their deficits in social and communication skills, students with autism often need assistance with social interactions, and peers play a vital role in the social development process. Before peers can establish friendships with the children with autism, they must be educated about autism. It is therefore the job of the general education teacher, to teach their students about autism. Designed to help early elementary general education teachers educate their students about autism and promote friendships between the students with autism and their peers, the Children’s Literature Kit: Socially Including Students with Autism contains children’s books, which address characteristics of autism, corresponding literature lesson plans, and informative lists.