This page will host helpful resources for anyone who interacts with individuals on the autism spectrum (that means everyone!). General guidance about how to engage individuals on the spectrum and specific resources for parents and teachers will appear here. Resources may include background reading, videos, curriculum ideas, inclusive teaching tips, links to external resources, interviews, transition tips for adolescents on the spectrum, parenting guides for common challenges, and more. If there is a topic you would like to see addressed, please contact us!
Documents / Papers
Presume Competence: A guide to successful, evidence-based principles for supporting and engaging individuals with autism
This comprehensive document lays out the fundamental principles all Institute employees, interns, and volunteers live by in our interactions with individuals on the autism spectrum. The model is grounded in respect, dignity, and equality, and based on research. Presume Competence also includes practical tips for toilet training, developing a stable bedtime routine, and engaging your child in play and learning opportunities. This thorough guide is authored by Dr. John Hussman, who likes to refer to it as “1.0”—it represents the moral foundation from which the Institute operates.
In research studies, teachers have reported that they wish they had more specific and concise information about each child with special needs in their classrooms, as IEPs can be lengthy and confusing. To help your child’s teacher support him, consider adapting this template letter to meet your needs at the start of the school year—or anytime. It provides language and ideas for what to say as an “introduction to your child” to help your child have the best experience possible in an inclusive classroom. You might consider sending the same letter to the school’s guidance counselor, nurse, librarian, or anyone else who might interact with her.