Friday, January 21, 2011

'My Mouth is a Volcano' & 'A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue'

Social and communication difficulties go hand and hand with children with autism.  Some of the more subtle rules are the hardest to learn.  Often we don't have to teach these skills because kids typically just pick up on them from watching others.  These two books use simple language and colorful pictures to capture some of these situations. 

My Mouth is a Volcano
I highly recommend this book.  This book tackles a difficulty that many children on and off the spectrum face; talking when it is not appropriate.  It looks specifically at a child that can't help but blurt out comments in class, talk about things that are not related to the conversation and interrupting family members when they are talking.  It is described as this uncontrollable urge that he has to learn to cope with.  He learns how others feel when he does this by looking at how he feels when other children do this to him.  There are beautiful illustrations along with short passages on each page.  It also describes what the child needs to do when faced with the situation.  Great book overall!

A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue
Another adorable book with great illustrations.  This book is very cute in describing a child that goes around tattling and telling on everyone.  It tries to make the distinction between when you should tell an adult and when you shouldn't.  The child in the story is made to believe that his tongue will grow long and turn yellow with purple spots if he tells on others.  The book describes when you need to tell someone would be if there is danger.  There are also rules to tattling that many but not all individuals could use to know what are times that you tell others. 
I do have a few worries with children on the spectrum.  Often, children with autism have difficulties asking for help from others and to further discourage may be a problem.  Additionally, those on the spectrum can have anxiety and difficulties with imaginary concepts.  It could be frightening to some that would assume their tongue could actually turn yellow and purple if they talk to others.  I think that this book can be very helpful but possibly not for everyone on the spectrum. 


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