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Introduction. Part 1. The Place. 1. A Place to Play. 2. All Good Parties End Up in the Kitchen. 3. 3-2-1 Blast Off! 4. Tidying Up the Place. 5. Private Space and Quiet Places. 6. And Out the Back Door...Outside Places. Part 2. The Process of Becoming the People They Are Meant to Be. Part 3. Appendices: Perspective, Safety, and Frogs. Resources.
Brilliant and unexpected ideas to support development in the everyday surrounding of the home
Jennifer Cook O'Toole has Asperger syndrome and is the mother to three young Asperkids. She graduated from Brown University, and attended Columbia University's Graduate School of Social Work. She has previously worked as a social worker, and a teacher in both special needs and mainstream education. She has also served on the Family Advisory Board for Levine Children's Hospital, North Carolina, and regularly gives presentations on special needs parenting. In 2002 she was nominated for Disney's Teacher of the Year Award. More recently, she has been honored with the GRASP (Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership) 2012 Distinguished Spectrumite Medal, as well as the 2012 Temple Grandin Award for "outstanding accomplishment and contribution to [her] family and community". She is the author of Asperkids and The Asperkid's (Secret) Book of Social Rules, also published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. She lives near Charlotte, North Carolina.
The text used is, simple but elegant. If I was a parent of a child with Asperger's I would find this book to be comforting, and of great support. -- SNAP Childcare It is clear that the book is multi-purpose, in that it seeks to provide families with a safe, comfortable and functional environment while also emphasising the numerous opportunities to build important skills within the home... The tips within involve relatively un-intrusive changes to the home that are easily achievable and are likely to provide a very positive outcome for the whole family. -- International Journal of Developmental Disabilities Beautifully presented with colour photographs throughout, this functional and fun book will win a place in the homes and hearts of all parents of children with Asperger syndrome. -- Asperger East Anglia It is simply gorgeous book, demonstrating how you can exploit the learning opportunities in every room of your home and make the physical surroundings that affect children so profoundly, homely, helpful spaces where they can learn and grow in confidence rather that fear and frustration. -- eye With an abundance of helpful photographs, Jennifer O'Toole takes readers, room by room, as well as outside, through the hows and wherefores of those things everyone can do to create such a home with minimum outlay and maximum impact. -- Red Reading Hub blog The suggestions of colour shape and texture is very important to a child with Asperger's... The text used is, simple but elegant... it's a great index of how to improve, change and create an environment that's safe and inviting for them. -- Caroline Hartwell - specialist nanny A how-to guide for parents of children with Asperger's syndrome (AS) on how to best structure their home life to support their AS kids. O'Toole's instructional manual demonstrates the importance of structuring the home environment and everyday tasks (or chores) around the house so that children with AS can feel confident, successful, and comfortable, thus reducing stress and building self-esteem.... Home should be a place where children feel safe and secure as well as a place to retreat to and recharge when the world becomes overwhelming. O'Toole's easy-to-follow visual how-to guides parents to create a safe haven for their AS children where they can practice the skills they struggle with. -- Library Journal Once again Jennifer gives us insight into how Asperger kids "tick". A structured, consistent environment makes the world a safer place and home is where this starts. Her practical, up-to-date tips not only make home a safe place but a learning experience for life. The great photos endorse the idea. A must, not only for parents with Asperkids, but parents of all kids. -- Dr Judith Gould, Clinical Psychologist and Director of the NAS Lorna Wing Centre for Autism I really like Jennifer's positive work, emphasizing what kids on the spectrum CAN do. Jennifer teaches real-world skills that will help individuals achieve their true potential. -- Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in Pictures I just finished reading The Asperkid's Launch Pad, and I am inspired! It's a book about interior design! It's a guide to helping your child learn to navigate the world! It's a chat with a (really knowledgeable, really understanding) friend! In The Asperkid's Launch Pad, Jennifer O'Toole starts with the premise "Home is where your story begins", and then takes the reader on a fun, informative journey. There are helpful tips - dozens of them in every chapter - about how to break down everyday tasks for kids who are on the autism spectrum and there are beautiful photographs showing how you can create a space in which you and your children can thrive. -- Bobbi Sheahan, author of What I Wish I'd Known about Raising a Child with Autism, columnist for S.I. Focus magazine, and middle-aged Asperkid Home is where your Asperkids become superkids! And here is the step-by-step primer to help make it happen. Once again, Jennifer Cook O'Toole taps her Aspergian perspective and wit to gift parents of these precious kids with priceless insights for success in life. -- Craig Evans, founder of Autism Hangout Jennifer successfully attacks the question of creating a fun and functioning home inhabited by Aspies big and small. She applies both practical detail and artistic flair, the latter often being overlooked in autistic spectrum people because of our devotion to problem solving and perfection. This is a wonderful book to look at and to read. Neat freaks like me will find affirmation and the other half, those who have a hard time organizing their environments, will find solutions. -- Rudy Simone, author of Aspergirls: Empowering Females with Asperger Syndrome The marriage of Montessori method and autism sounded like an excellent idea to me. As a lover of small children... I was delighted. As a former educator and fan of the Montessori method... I was intrigued. As a person who has many autistic characteristics... I was taking notes. 'I waited for Jennifer's newest book, The Asperkid's Launch Pad, with great anticipation and I was not disappointed. Just as with the first two Asperkid books, this book is appropriate not only for the Autism Spectrum but the Human Spectrum. There are touches of genius in all of us. Jennifer manages to find the sparks, nurture the strengths, and address the challenges until we are left with nothing but focused intent and renewed appreciation for our individual awesomeness. -- Kathleen Tehrani, CEO of Autism Brainstorm LLC A question I am frequently asked is "How do I create a safe, friendly space for my child?". After reading The Asperkid's Launch Pad, I thought to myself, "Finally! A how-to guide that explores a crucial dimension in the Aspie hierarchy of needs". An asperfriendly environment is paramount to supporting Asperkids and their superpowers everywhere. This book is a must read for any Asperkid family! -- Tania A. Marshall, M.Sc. (App. Psych.), psychologist, autism specialist, and Founder and Director of Sunshine Coast Centre for Autism, Queensland, Australia This book is beautifully designed. It has repeated headings so you know where you are and what might be coming next and the processes are broken down into simple steps. Jennifer is a wonderful example of being a successful mom and supporting her kids on the spectrum. -- Robyn Steward, autism trainer and author Ordinary children are often expected to learn the ways of life through a sort of "osmosis" by observing the ways of others and following vague directions. This is often not viable for a person on the spectrum. This book provides great insight into the complexities of daily life, showing, for example, the thirty-eight steps involved in consuming a glass of orange juice. A treasure chest of learning activities, to help both practical skill building and better understanding, is provided. Highly recommended! -- Lars Perner, PhD, Chair of the Autism Society's Panel of People on the Spectrum of Autism Advisors With equal parts nuture and wit, Jennifer Cook O'Toole provides the recipe for superhero success at home in the "Asperkid's Launch Pad." The accompanying photos invite parents to make small changes and teach independence skills that will make your home a safe haven. The AADigest team feels that O'Toole's intuitive sense of what works best for Asperkids makes this book a priceless resource! -- Kim Fields, Managing Editor, Autism Asperger's Digest The book is bright and simple guide to making your home a refuge and safe spot for your child where they can hone their concentration skills, take pride in their work and build independence... Fun photographs show ideas for inspiring your child's creativity and thirst for learning. -- Melissa Carr, Aukids' reader panel * AuKids Magazine *