Navigating the Social World: A Curriculum for Individuals with Asperger's Syndrome, High Functioning Autism and Related Disorders

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Future Horizons, 2002 - Education - 350 pages
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Pediatrician Jeanie McAfee originally created this user-friendly social curriculum for her daughter Rachel, who was diagnosed with Asperger's at age ten. Since then, it has become a staple for parents and educators. It addresses the most urgent problems facing those with Asperger's Syndrome, high-functioning autism, and related disorders. Dr. McAfee covers how to:
  • increase communication skills
  • recognize and cope with emotions
  • recognize and prevent stress
  • develop abstract thinking skills
  • address behavioral problems
Tasks are broken down into small steps, repeated until they are mastered, then generalized. Helpful handouts, templates, and forms will help keep teachers and learners on track. Helpful sections include:
  • Recognizing and Coping with One's Own Emotions
  • Communication and Social Skills
  • Abstract Thinking Skills
  • Behavioral Issues

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Communication and Social Skills
Communication and Social Skills
Basic Conversational Responses
Recognizing and Interpreting Nonverbal and Contextual Clues in Other People
Greetings and Goodbyes
Initiating Conversations
Using Nonverbal Conversational Skills
Recognizing and Using Tone of Voice Clues
Offering and Asking for Help
Giving and Receiving Compliments
Resolving Conflicts Sharing Negative Feelings and Opinions
Abstract Thinking Skills
Abstract Thinking Skills
Figurative Speech
Behavioral Issues
Hidden Causes of Problem Behaviors

Conversational Manners
Making Introductions
Public vs Private

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About the author (2002)

Dr. Jeanie McAfee was born and raised in the Los Angeles area, and received her B.S. and medical degrees from the University of California at Davis. After completing an internship in pediatrics at Children's Hospital, Oakland, she spent several years providing general pediatric care to underserved children, and three years working with children of U.S. servicemen in Germany. While attending medical school, she met and married the man of her dreams, Keith, and they now have four wonderful daughters. When Jeanie's daughter Rachel was diagnosed with high-functioning autism (HFA) at the age of ten, Jeanie believed she would finally be able to find an appropriate treatment program for her. However, after doing extensive research on autism and Asperger's Syndrome, she soon discovered that it was difficult to find an existing program that would address Rachel's special needs while maximizing her unique combination of strengths. This is what motivated Jeanie to write Navigating the Social World. Combining her medical background as a pediatrician with her understanding of her daughter's specific needs, Jeanie developed one of the most effective social curricula ever created. She strongly believes that the more parents and educators work together to share ideas and experiences, the better we will be able to help our students, clients, and loved ones with Asperger's Syndrome, high-functioning autism and related disorders to live happier and more productive lives.

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