April is Autism Month, commencing with the fifth annual World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, 2012. Every year, autism organizations around the world celebrate the day with unique fundraising and awareness-raising events, for example Light It Up Blue (which is why this post is blue :)).
Please also take a look at the trailer (below) for “What are you doing?” which is a short documentary film made by Autism Awareness Australia aimed at teaching school aged children about acceptance and understanding of their peers with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
“What are you doing?” will be distributed to all 10,000 schools across Australia in the coming months and hopefully, in the future, throughout the world! The official film website is at www.whatareyoudoingfilm.com. It would have been nice to have had a film like this back when my boys were first starting school. 🙂
Also in the interests of raising awareness, there’s a wonderful collection of autism poems at Autism Epicenter. This is one of them…
Public Display of Autism
by Tina Moreland
If he falls to the floor, kicking and screaming, because there’s no chicken nuggets, it’s just his way of coping. Be patient, you’ll get your turn to order.
If she bumps her head and starts to hit herself in the face, don’t stare, it’s her frustration. Mom will handle it, she see’s it everyday.
If dad is cutting his child’s food, he’s not treating him like baby. He just doesn’t want his son to choke.
If she ignores your child on the playground, she’s not a brat. She’s just not good at social interaction. She would love to play with your child, she just doesn’t know how.
He may be too big to sit in the shopping cart, no, he’s not lazy. He wants to run around, but his mom needs to shop. She’s not up for chasing him today.
If she has to be carried out screaming, it’s probably because of a meltdown. Be helpful, open the door. Don’t just stare or whisper. No, it’s not because she didn’t get the toy she wanted. If it were only that simple.
Don’t talk to her like a child, unless she is one. Don’t yell, she’s not deaf. She may not talk, but she can understand.
No, it’s not bad parenting. Discipline won’t help.
This is autism, it’s his life. Don’t judge him, he’s not judging you.
…and of course you can always read some (or all!) of the many pages here on my blog that are about Autism and Aspergers Syndrome. 😀