Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU) was proud to host the launch of ‘Exploring Theory of Mind with Children & Young People on the Autism Spectrum’ the latest book by Dr Clare Lawrence, Senior Lecturer in Secondary Education at BGU.
Subtitled ‘Two Sides to Every Story’, the book explores how theory of mind differences, and the difficulties created by different viewpoints, can lead to frustration and confusion for children with autism.
This exploration is lead by carefully structured stories featuring Bryn, who is autistic, his mother and their ‘Wise Dog’. All involve frustrating or confusing social events that befall Bryn leading to meltdowns with each story then told again from another viewpoint. Each night, Wise Dog talks to Bryn and helps him understand what has happened.
Alongside the stories of Bryn, his mother and Wise Dog are a wide selection of activities which are based around the stories and are designed to further the reader’s understanding of the challenges faced by children with Autism. These activities include story board and role-playing exercises which are perfect for parents and children to work through together or for teachers to use in classroom situations.
Speaking at the launch Clare discussed the positive impact she hoped the book would have:
“I’ve been working on this book for a long time and I’m delighted to now see it finished and available for people to enjoy and learn from. The ability to interpret different viewpoints can be a real struggle for children with autism who, due to theory of mind differences, see their version as the truth. My hope now is that this book can educate those who come into contact with children on the spectrum on how to interact with and support children with viewpoint so different to their own”.
Clare was supported in the creation of the book by her BGU colleague Aimee Quickfall, Head of Programmes Primary & Early Years ITE, who provided illustrations.
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