Positively Autism

Sample Issue

This issue contains...

In the News

Current Autism Research

Busy Bee Book Review -
“Not Even Wrong: Adventures in Autism” by Paul Collins

“The Daffodil Principle”

Thank You/Future Issue Contents

In the News
Teen with Autism Reaches New Heights with Modeling
A fifteen-year-old young man with autism and a love for having his photo taken, has begun what may become a successful career in modeling. The teen has appeared in both national and local magazines and publications, including "Autism-Asperger's Digest" and "Guideposts Magazine." The family's autism consultant shares that, "Every child with autism is unique, and King is a good example of how these children can develop their own 'hidden talent.'" Please click on the title above to read the full text of this article.

Young People with Autism Express Themselves Through Art
A teen with autism and a talent for drawing wildlife will have her work, and the art of other children with autism, on display in a local art showcase. The children's artwork will also be displayed in an "online museum" website. A coordinator of the project says, "The purpose of the program is to reveal and cherish their hidden talents." Please click on the title above to read the full text of this article.

As you can see, articles that focus on a positive aspect of autism, or positive achievements of individuals with autism, as somewhat rare. Let’s help change that, and recognize those reporters and news organizations that publish positive stories, by e-mailing the reporters who write positive articles a short note of thanks. I hope that this will encourage the publication of similar articles in the future. Often, the reporter’s e-mail address can be found at the end of the article, or with their byline at the top of the article. Here’s a sample letter that you are welcome to use or modify to reflect your opinions, situation, and style.

Dear ___________,

I recently read your article, [TITLE] in [NEWSPAPER OR MAGAZINE]. As a parent/teacher/person with autism, I wanted to let you know that I appreciate the positive portrayal of a person with autism in your article. So much of the autism news today is negative, depressing, or one-sided. Articles like yours give us hope, motivation, and ideas to help individuals with autism to reach their full potential and achieve great things. I sincerely hope that more articles like yours will be published in the future. Thank you again, and I hope you have a wonderful day.


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Current Autism Research

About the "Current Autism Research" feature:

"Current Autism Research" lists articles about autism that have been recently published. To read these articles, subscriptions to the journals in which they are published can be purchased. However, this can become expensive, and another way to obtain these articles is through local college and university libraries. Many of these libraries contain a section entitled, "Periodicals," or something similar, and the journals may be found there in alphabetical order. Often, copies can be made, or you can simply read the journal at the library and take notes. This is a great way for parents, teachers, families, and others to stay current on trends in autism research, and may help you discover new strategies for home, school, or community goals.

Here, in issues of “Positively Autism,” you will find lists of current research about autism published in the journals listed below. It saves you the time that would be spent searching through all of the publications, and allows you to focus on putting the research to work for you, your children, or your students!

Selected Journals:
  • Teaching Exceptional Children
  • Exceptional Children
  • Journal of Early Intervention
  • Young Exceptional Children
  • Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities
  • Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis

Note: A listing of research here does not imply an endorsement of the methods or procedures by Positively Autism. Please thoroughly research any program or method that you are considering, obtaining any necessary help from professionals familiar with your situation.

Current Autism Research Examples:

Title: "Learning Through Seeing and Doing: Visual Supports for Children With Autism"
Author(s): Shaila M. Rao and Brenda Gagie
Journal: Teaching Exceptional Children
Issue: July/August 2006 (Volume 38, Issue 6)

Title: "The Development of Social Anxiety in Adolescents With Autism Spectrum Disorders"
Author(s): Scott Bellini
Journal: Focus on Autism & Other Developmental Disabilities
Issue: Fall 2006 (Volume 21, Issue 3)

Title: "Sleep Problems in Children With Autism and in Typically Developing Children"
Author(s): Charles D. Hoffman, Dwight P. Sweeney, James E. Gilliam, and Muriel C. Lopez-Wagner
Journal: Focus on Autism & Other Developmental Disabilities
Issue: Fall 2006 (Volume 21, Issue 3)

Title: "Feeding Problems in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Review"
Author(s): Jennifer R. Ledford and David L. Gast
Journal: Focus on Autism & Other Developmental Disabilities
Issue: Fall 2006 (Volume 21, Issue 3)

Title: "Increasing Physical Activity in Individuals With Autism"
Author(s): Teri Todd and Greg Reid
Journal: Focus on Autism & Other Developmental Disabilities
Issue: Fall 2006 (Volume 21, Issue 3)

Title: "Parent Perspectives on Role Engagement: An Investigation of Parents of Children With ASD and Their Self-Reported Roles With Education Professionals"
Author(s): Julia B. Stoner and Maureen E. Angell
Journal: Focus on Autism & Other Developmental Disabilities
Issue: Fall 2006 (Volume 21, Issue 3)

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Busy Bee Book Review - Quick, Important Highlights of Books about Autism
“Not Even Wrong: Adventures in Autism” by Paul Collins

Title: Not Even Wrong: Adventures in Autism

Author: Paul Collins

Publisher (Date): Bloomsbury USA (2005)

Recommended for: parents and teachers of children of all ages, service providers, individuals with autism, and anyone interested in the learning more about autism!

Summary: An exploration of the history of autism, including famous persons (past and present) who may have autism, interwoven with stories about the author's own family, including his young son with autism.

Review: Collins has an intriguing and entertaining writing style. The book takes the reader on a journey through history and around the globe, and is a very entertaining read. It also provides unique insights into autism that I have not read in any other book. Highly recommended!

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“The Daffodil Principle”

Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, "Mother, you must come see the daffodils before they are over."

I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead. "I will come next Tuesday," I promised, a little reluctantly, on her third call.

Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and so I drove there. When I finally walked into Carolyn's house and hugged and greeted my grandchildren, I said, "Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in the clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see bad enough to drive another inch!"

My daughter smiled calmly and said, "We drive in this all the time, Mother."

"Well, you won't get me back on the road until it clears, and then I'm heading for home!" I assured her.

"I was hoping you'd take me over to the garage to pick up my car."

"How far will we have to drive?"

"Just a few blocks," Carolyn said. "I'll drive. I'm used to this."

After several minutes, I had to ask, "Where are we going? This isn't the way to the garage!"

"We're going to my garage the long way," Carolyn smiled, "by way of the daffodils."

"Carolyn," I said sternly, "please turn around."

"It's all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience."

After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church. On the far side of the church, I saw a hand-lettered sign that read, "Daffodil Garden." We got out of the car and each took a child's hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path. Then, we turned a corner of the path, and I looked up and gasped.

Before me lay the most glorious sight. It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it down over the mountain peak and slopes. The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns-great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butter yellow. Each different-colored variety was planted as a group so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There were five acres of flowers.

"But who has done this?" I asked Carolyn.

"It's just one woman," Carolyn answered. "She lives on the property. That's her home." Carolyn pointed to a well kept A-frame house that looked small and modest in the midst of all that glory.

We walked up to the house. On the patio, we saw a poster. "Answers to the Questions I know you are asking" was the headline. The first answer was a simple one:"50,000 bulbs," it read. The second answer was, "One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and very little brain." The third answer was, "Began in 1958."

There it was, The Daffodil Principle. For me, that moment was a life-changing experience. I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun-one bulb at a time-to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountain top. Still, just planting one bulb at a time, year after year, had changed the world. This unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. She had created something of ineffable (indescribable) magnificence, beauty, and inspiration.

The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration. That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time-often just one baby-step at a time-and learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time.

When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world.

"It makes me sad in a way," I admitted to Carolyn. "What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it 'one bulb at a time' through all those years. Just think what I might have been able to achieve!"

My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. "Start today," she said. "It's so pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, 'How can I put this to use today?' "

- Author Unknown

Editor's Message:
I chose to include "The Daffodil Principle" in our eMagazine because I believe it has a strong message for the Autism community: it is never too late! Many of our children with Autism are not diagnosed until they are school-aged, or even as middle/high school students or adults. However, it is never too late for these individuals to learn, make progress, and have successful lives. It is also never too late to make improvements in your own life and set goals for yourself. Start with something small, as the woman planted her first daffodil bulb, and it may make a beautiful difference in your own life, as well as the lives of others!

Thank You!

Thank you for taking the time to explore our sample issue! Future issues will include items such as interviews, strategies/resources for parents and teachers, children’s literature, as well as more inspirational stories, book reviews, and positive news! To receive your free subscription, please
click here. Have a wonderful day!

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