I Am Special: A Workbook to Help Children, Teens and Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders to Understand Their Diagnosis, Gain Confidence and Thrive 2ed


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I am Special is a proven programme for helping children, teens and adults on the autism spectrum to understand themselves and their diagnosis, gain confidence and thrive.

Peter Vermeulen describes in-depth the theory and research behind the programme, and explains how to use it in practice. He presents a series of specially-designed worksheets, included as online downloadable content in a handy printable format, on a wide range of topics, including how the brain works, physical characteristics, likes and dislikes, sensory issues, strengths and weaknesses, learning preferences, relationships and plans for the future. When completed, the worksheets can be used to build up a unique and personal book about the individual on the autism spectrum, to help foster self-understanding and self-confidence. For the very first time, the programme presented in this second edition is suitable for use with teens and adults as well as children, and also contains helpful interactive material for siblings.

This is a unique resource for all those involved in supporting children, teens and adults on the autism spectrum, including teachers, psychologists, counsellors as well as parents and carers.


  • Part I: Theory
  • 1. Background.
  • 2. Self-image.
  • 3. Psychoeducation.
  • 4. The Socratic Method.
  • 5. Introducing Autism.
  • 6. Working with I am special.
  • Part II: Practical Manual.
  • 7. I am special.
  • 8. The big book about me.
  • 9. That’s me?!
  • 10. I am special for siblings.
  • 11. I am special for peers.
  • 12. Various worksheets.
  • 13. I am special game.
  • 14. Forms.
  • 15. I am special for adults.
  • 16. The world in fragments.
  • CD ROM Documents. Literature. References. Index.

Author Bio:

Peter Vermeulen trained as a counsellor and educationalist and has worked for more than 25 years with children and adults on the autism spectrum. At present, he is Autism Consultant and Lecturer at Autisme Centraal in Belgium, where he edits the bi-monthly magazine Autisme. He is active as a trainer all over Europe, the USA, Canada and South-Africa. He has written many articles and books and is the author of Autistic Thinking.


‘Supporting children and young people on the autism spectrum to attain greater self-awareness and understanding can be a real challenge. Practitioners from a wide range of professional disciplines will find Peter Vermeulen’s sensitive and well considered approach inspirational as well as invaluable.’ – Charlene Tait, Scottish Autism

 ‘I am Special is one of the most useful workbooks ever produced for autism. This new edition also embraces technological assistance, in its extensive library of electronic worksheets. Every parent or professional who works in autism should have a copy of this book.’ – Professor Lynette van Zijl, Stellenbosch University, South Africa