It’s an honor to join with the talented, thoughtful team at A Novel Mind. I’m excited to share my latest Big Ideas for [All Kinds of] Young Minds thoughts via the guest blog post linked below.
Reading lots of storybooks through an inclusion lens can reveal a message that ND is an element in many tales (and in real-life, too).
5 Titles Covered: We Don’t Eat Our Classmates, They All Saw a Cat, I’m a Duck, Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don’t!), Elmer, A Friend for Henry
Picture Book Roundup: Reading Between the Lines for All Kinds of Minds
Neurodiversity (ND) is a term describing the wide network of traits that stem from mental, behavioral, or developmental differences/challenges. Neurodiverse (sometimes called neurodivergent) or ‘differently brained’ individuals have unique abilities, challenges, and preferences.
When A Novel Mind features neurodiversity-related titles, the ND themes are usually prominent. But today’s picture book round-up offers a more subtle twist. Many other picture books in the library – especially those with friendship themes – can also be great conduits for ND conversations. Specifically, they can:
- promote empathy (not pity),
- depict acceptance (not ridicule),
- emphasize successes (even tiny ones), and
- define disabilities or illness accurately and realistically (avoiding false heroism or stigma-based otherness).
Further, adults can enrich young readers’ understanding by asking questions such as:
- · Have you or a schoolmate or friend ever acted like this/felt this way?
- · What may have caused the behavior?
- · If the behavior was difficult for you or for the person doing it, what made it better? Read the rest here.