Autism Awareness Month Books for Your Students

Autism Awareness Month Books for Your Students

By Joelle Shusterman , Mar 27th 2023

Autism Awareness Month

World Autism Awareness month is all about kindness and encouraging acceptance! Take some time this April to share stories with your students that increase their understanding of people with autism. When inclusion is practiced in the classroom, it creates a culture of respect and prepares children for a better life in their community as adults. It also provides those with autism the opportunity to reach their full potential.

We created this list of picture books and middle school books, so children can see themselves on the page. These Autism Awareness month books are perfect for teachers looking for ways to empower their students with autism and to spread understanding to readers everywhere. Help your students recognize the challenges and wide range of talents that people on the spectrum have.

Explore these ten books with strong messages and characters that challenge the idea of “normal”. Share the joy of reading this Autism Awareness Month to create a kinder, more inclusive world for everyone!

Picture Books:

1.The Girl Who Thought in Pictures by Julia Finley Mosca

Meet Dr. Temple Grandin who is a quirky scientist that is not afraid to be different. Being diagnosed from a young age with autism does not stop her. She is one of the world’s most groundbreaking inventors! Have your students learn about the inspirational lives of amazing scientists with this illustrative rhyming tale that is full of fun facts and a colorful timeline of events, capturing exactly how Dr. Temple visually thinks!

2. It’s Me, Henry! by Stéphanie Deslauriers

Henry likes to call plants by their Latin names and he doesn’t remember to raise his hand in class. Sometimes Henry doesn’t notice his classmates' frustration, but other days he does. When he feels different, he knows he can always seek comfort under the old willow tree. Then, one day his class goes on a trip to the botanical gardens and everyone starts to see how special Henry’s knowledge is.

3. Charlie Makes a Splash! by Holly Robinson Peete & Shane W. Evans

Charlie loves water! He loves swimming, pools, ponds, the ocean, and trips to the aquarium. Like many kids on the spectrum, Charlie finds solace and empowerment in the things that he is passionate about. Experience life through Charlie’s discoveries and adventures and realize the wonders of swimming to your own rhythm.

4. All My Stripes by Danielle Royer & Shaina Rudolph

Zane is worried his classmates don’t see him for the curious and wonderful zebra he is. He is afraid they don’t see his “caring stripes” just his “autism stripe”. But Mama sees all of Zane for who he is and helps him realize that all of his stripes are unique strengths. All My Stripes addresses the challenges individuals on the spectrum face while providing enlightening tools for parents, teachers, and caregivers.

5. A Friend for Henry by Jenn Bailey

All Henry wants is a friend, but being on the autism spectrum means making a friend is more difficult. His actions are always misinterpreted and sometimes everything just goes wrong especially when it's too loud! Will Henry be able to find a friend or will someone find him? A Friend for Henry is a heartwarming picture book about a boy on the spectrum who discovers the magic of friendship.

Middle School Books:

1. Planet Earth Is Blue by Nicole Panteleakos

See through the eyes of Nova, in this beautiful story about an autistic nonverbal girl. Nova and her older sister Bridget share a passion for space exploration and they eagerly await the launch of the space shuttle Challenger when their teacher will be going into space. But when Bridget disappears and Nova is placed in a new home, she faces challenges with her foster family who have trouble seeing her intelligence. Now, Nova counts down to the day of the launch when she believes she’ll see Bridget again.

2. Good Different by Meg Eden Kuyatt

Selah sticks to her rules of being normal. She bottles up her emotions and hides them away until she gets home where she knows she can open them again. One day, her emotions come bursting out when she explodes and hits a student at school. Her comfortable familiar world is gone. Selah soon realizes that just because she’s different doesn’t mean she’s damaged. Can she convince others too?

3. A Kind of Spark by Elle McNicoll

Addie who is on the spectrum struggles to connect with her classmates at school. When her teacher goes over the witch trials, Addie becomes connected to the witches and their story. She learns the witches were persecuted in her town centuries ago just for being different. Now she is on a mission to let the truth of their stories be told and fight for what’s right.

4. A Boy Called Bat by Elana K. Arnold

Bat is a boy on the autism spectrum who discovers friendship with a baby skunk. Bat’s mother is a veterinarian who brought the baby skunk home and didn’t expect Bat to feel so protective. Now Bat has to prove to his mom that his friend skunk would make the perfect pet and new addition to the family.

5. Izzy at the End of the World by K.A. Reynolds

Being on the autism spectrum, life isn’t always easy for Izzy, especially the idea of being “normal”. She wants life to feel normal, but when her mother passed away she felt like it was the end of the world. One night her whole family disappears, and she’s left alone with her pet dog Akka. Now it's up to her and Akka to stay alive even if that means fighting against ugly, gray monsters. They may just be the key to saving the whole human world.

Order any of these titles from BookPal to celebrate Autism Awareness Month with your students. We can provide you with class sets of books at wholesale discounted pricing, starting at 25 copies minimum. Connect with us today for a custom quote.

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