The Benefits of Adapted Books for Autistic Kids

Posted by Krystie Yeo on

The Benefits of Adapted Books for Autistic Kids

Especially when you have children with autism, it is important to take all the steps that will help them succeed and learn new skills, even if they have to do it differently from other neurotypical children. Supporting kids with autism or other learning disabilities will make their ability to learn more accessible. That's why adapted books have been able to be a valuable asset for kids with autism in developing their literacy skills.

Want to find out more about the pros of adapted books? Read on to find out more about the benefits of adapted books for kids with autism.

What Are Adapted Books?

Adapted books are books that are modified to fit a child's specific needs, which are important when trying to create books for a kid with learning disabilities such as autism. Any adapted book must be made in a way that makes it more accessible to a student who has difficulty with typical books.

Some modifications that can be a part of adapted books are 

  • Physical objects glued to the page
  • Page spacers that keep pages apart and make them easier to turn
  • Assistive technology
  • Pictures matched to words
  • Adding braille
  • Making the text larger
  • Adding moveable pictures or visuals.

Why are these modifications important?

No child learns the same things in the same way. These modifications help highlight aspects of literacy skills while remaining accessible. It should also make them easy to use for kids who have different learning styles.

Adapted Books Let Autistic Kids Engage

Because of its visual aspect, adapted books allow kids with autism or other learning disabilities to stay engaged with what they are reading. It's even been proven in studies that these books are able to encourage readers.

One study from UCLA showed that minimally verbal kids with autism showed increased story comprehension and engagement during the shared reading of adapted books. Shared reading, for those who don't know, is a practice used in early education settings that are widely thought to encourage language and literacy development in children. It showed that if an adapted book uses visual supports, tactile objects, and specific teaching strategies, it will help kids with learning disabilities succeed.

They Help Kids Concentrate

Oftentimes when a parent tries to engage their child in an activity, the child tends to lose their focus. This is because the subject matter is not interesting for them. For kids with special needs, they need more positive reinforcement to strengthen their level of concentration.

Adapted books can help kids with autism concentrate on what is happening in the book.

One way is by using an adapted book that has forms of interactive media (such as music, lights, and visuals). This can attract a child's attention and make them more interested in the tasks in the book. The child can then connect better to what is happening in the book and strengthen their literacy skills. 

It Builds Reading Comprehension and Fluency

Through interactive media and pictures that can be placed around the book, it helps your child develop a better understanding of what is happening in the adapted book than if the book only had text and nothing else to engage them. 

In addition, the use of a discussion sheet can help you plan questions helping your child develop their reading comprehension and other skills such as spelling, counting, wh-questions (who, what, when, where, why), receptive and expressive language, colors, sizes, and much more.

They Are Easy to Use At Home

Because adapted books are often made by other educators, it can fit just as well into a home as a classroom. If you homeschool your child, adapted books are a great way to bring a learning environment into a place where your child will be more open and receptive than sitting at a desk.

If you want to use adapted books with their kids, you should ask your child's teachers about good resources to find them and how to put the books together if necessary. 

Great Books For Autistic Children

One great way to make books for a kid with learning disabilities is to transform classics such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Goodnight Moon, and other books into a format appropriate for an adapted book. By doing this, you give your kids access to the same books that other neurotypical kids read, though in a way that fits your child's individual needs.

Other resources made available from institutions around the country that provide adapted books include

There are also websites that have downloadable adaptive books that you can print out at home if you don't want to spend too much money on an adapted book. Of course, we also provide many adapted book collections on our site!

Help Your Child Learn With Adapted Books

Letting your child learn how to read and develop their literacy skills with adapted books make these books a valuable resource to have. They can be used to teach a variety of skills, be adapted for different age and skill levels, and be appealing for kids with autism or another learning disability.

We hope this article helped you see how adapted books can be a great benefit and usage of time for your child. If you want to know how to buy adapted books, visit our website or call us at (714) 598-9550.