Kathryn Tucker

Autism Lite: Leading Our Child Off the Spectrum

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“Wonderful resource for parents of a newly diagnosed, very young child and a great introduction to the Early Start Denver Model of effective early therapy.  Lots of practical tips for working with autistic children aged two to four.”
-Temple Grandin, author, The Way I See It, Thinking in Pictures

The story of one family's experience pulling their daughter out of autism.

A bold, playful, and affectionate two-year-old, Janie showed few overt signs of autism, a disorder often too subtle to detect in young children-when therapy has the deepest impact. At the pediatrician's suggestion, she was evaluated and diagnosed with a mild, high-functioning form of autism called PDD-NOS (or Autism Spectrum Disorder, Level 1 or 2).

Janie began intensive therapy following the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM), a behavioral and developmental therapy fast becoming one of the most effective treatments worldwide for children with autism under the age of five. With a talented therapist leading the way, Janie's family rallied around her to stop her quiet retreat into autism and draw her more fully into the world around her.

Through play routines, like popping bubbles, obstacle courses, and singing, ESDM therapy targeted the symptoms that isolated her socially, minimizing and often eliminating those tendencies before they hardwired for life.

Autism Lite chronicles Janie's extraordinary progress and her family's journey recognizing and understanding mild autism, from choosing a therapy to navigating school IEPs, from handling anxiety and eating issues to family sessions where her siblings learned to play with Janie in ways that developed her social skills, to seeing their daughter gain critical communication skills, begin to relate to other children, and eventually make friends.

An engaging, honest, and insightful memoir for anyone with a child in their immediate or extended family, community, classroom, or practice with mild autism.

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185 printed pages
Original publication



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