ALAN v25n3 - Inclusion Literature: A Resource Lisiting

Inclusion Literature:
A Resource Listing

Sharon Andrews

As today's classrooms become more inclusive and students with special needs are integrated into regular classrooms, literature about disabilities, what I have come to call inclusion literature, can become a powerful tool for helping students without disabilities develop an awareness of and tolerance for those with disabilities. Many ( Heim, 1994 ; Radencich, 1986 ; Stroud, 1981 ; Fein & Ginsberg, 1978 ; Umerlik, 1992) have reported that the use of inclusion literature is effective in promoting awareness, understanding, and acceptance of those with disabilities and can assist in creating positive attitudes toward disabilities.

The students I work with are preservice teachers who will soon be entering their own classrooms, classrooms that will have students with special needs in them. It is important that future teachers examine their attitudes toward students with special needs ( Dickens-Smith, 1995 ; Parish, Nunn, & Hattrop, 1982 ). Inclusion literature is one of the tools that I use to explore this area.

Over the past few years, I have been supplementing the traditional textbook I use in my introductory education/special education course with a variety of inclusion literature. Inclusion literature offers to preservice teachers another perspective from which to view disabilities as well as providing them with exposure to instructional resources that they may someday use in their own classrooms to promote tolerance. For example, part of one assignment where students develop an awareness activity to promote tolerance of a specific disability also requires students to locate a children's literature selection dealing with that specific disability. Students develop applications for using the children's literature in the classroom, share those with the class during a presentation, and read the book aloud to the class. Students also self-select a novel from my collection during a book pass and complete an alternative book report to reflect upon the novel. The variety of books I have been able to collect allows students to choose the type of book they most enjoy reading (autobiography, fiction, or nonfiction), one that is best suited to their reading ability, and one that is closest to their teaching major or area of greatest interest. Thus, students majoring in education of the deaf can select a book about hearing impairments while a regular education major might select a book written by a teacher. Student athletes often select the novels about athletes who acquire physical disabilities while participating in sports, and students with children of their own often choose one of the books written from a parental perspective. I have yet to have students who were unable to find a book that they did not enjoy reading. Students are also encouraged to switch their novel selection if, after beginning the novel, they find that it is not what they expected. As a culminating activity, in literature circles, students share their alternative book reports and discuss how the different novels treated similar issues and also consider how the perspective from which the book was written - parent, teacher, etc. - made a difference. I also incorporate teacher read-alouds from books relating to course topics being covered.

When I first began collecting inclusion literature, I was discouraged by the lack of resources I was able to find. I spent hours wandering about bookstores in hopes that I would stumble across a book I did not already have. Often I would come across titles in references lists and become excited at the prospect of adding another book to my collection, only to find out that it was unavailable. Believing that others may be sharing in my frustration, I have put together a listing of the inclusion literature I have been able to "get my hands on" and add to my collection. The listing includes children's and adolescent literature, books written by parents and teachers, autobiographies, and books that are related to issues affecting attitudes towards differences such as self esteem and individuality.

Children's Books

Betschart, Jean. A Magic Ride in Foozbah-Land. Chronimed Publishing, Inc., 1995 - health impairments/diabetes

Cairo, Shelley. Our Brother Has Down's Syndrome. Annick Press Ltd., 1985 - Down's syndrome

Carlson, Nancy. Arnie and the New Kid. Penguin Books, 1992 - physical disabilities

Dunn, Kathryn and Allison. Trouble with School. Woodbine House, 1993 - learning disabilities

Emmert, Michelle. I'm the Big Sister Now. Albert Whitman & Company, 1989 - cerebral palsy

Fain, Kathleen. A Sign Language Alphabet Handsigns. Scholastic, 1993 - hearing impairments/sign language

Fassler, Joan. Howie Helps Himself. Albert Whitman & Company, 1975 - cerebral palsy

Fleming, Virgina. Be Good to Eddie Lee. Philomel Books, 1993 - Down's syndrome

Girard, Linda. Alex, the Kid with AIDS. Albert Whitman & Company, 1991 - health impairments/AIDS

Lasker, Joe. He's My Brother. Albert Whitman & Company, 1974 - learning disabilities

Litchfield, Ada. Making Room for Uncle Joe. Albert Whitman & Company, 1984 - Down's syndrome

MacLachlan, Patricia. Through Grandpa's Eyes. HarperCollins, 1980 - visual impairments

Mayer, Gina and Mercer. A Very Special Critter. Western Publishing Company, 1992 - physical disabilities

Moss, Deborah Lee. The Rabbit with Epilepsy. Woodbine House, Incl, 1989 - seizure disorders

_____Shelley,the Hyperactive Turtle. Woodbine House, Inc., 1989 - hyperactivity

Muldoon, Kathleen M. Princess Pooh. Albert Whitman & Company, 1989 - physical disabilities

Osofsky, Audrey. My Buddy. Henry Holt & Company, 1992 - muscular dystrophy

Ostrow, William and Vivian. All About Asthma. Albert Whitman & Company, 1989 - health impairments/asthma

Peterson, Jeanne W. I Have a Sister My Sister Is Deaf. Harper Collins, 1977 - hearing impairments

Pirner, Connie. Even Little Kids Get Diabetes. Albert Whitman & Company, 1991 - health impairments/diabetes

Rankin, Laura. The Handmade Alphabet. Scholastic, Inc., 1991 - hearing impairments/sign language

Root, Ann & Gladden, Linda. Charlie's Challenge. Printmaster Press, 1995 - learning disabilities

Thompson, Mary. Andy and His Yellow Frisbee. Woodbine House, Inc., 1996 - autism

Adolescent Literature

Anderson, Rachel.The Bus People. Henry Holt & Company, 1989 - developmental disabilities

Auch, Mary Jane. Kidnapping Kevin Kowalski. Scholastic, 1990 - traumatic brain injury

Barrie, Barbara. Adam Zigzag. Delacorte Press, 1992 - learning disabilities

Betancourt, Jeanne. My Name Is (Brain) Brian. Scholastic, 1993 - learning disabilities

Blume, Judy. Deenie. Dell Publishing, 1973 - scoliosis

Brancato, Robin. Winning. Random House, 1977 - physical disabilities

Byars, Betsy. The Summer of Swans. Viking Press, 1970 - mental retardation

Carrick, Carol. Stay Away from SIMON! Clarion Books, 1985 - mental retardation

Christopher, Matt. Long Shot for Paul. Little, Brown, & Company, 1966 - developmental disabilities

Conly, Jane. Crazy Lady. Harper Collins, 1993 - mental retardation

Cooney, Caroline. Twenty Pageants Later. Bantam Books, 1991 - gifted, self-esteem

Cooney, Caroline. Among Friends. Bantam Books, 1987 - gifted

Crutcher, Chris.The Crazy Horse Electric Game. Dell Publising, 1987 - physical disabilities

Eyerly, Jeannette. The Seeing Summer. Pocket Books, 1981 - visual impairments

Flanigan, Sara. Alice. St. Martin's Press, 1988 - seizure disorders

Guest, Judith. Ordinary People. Penguin Books, 1976 - at-risk

Hamilton, Virginia. The Planet of Junior Brown. Collier Books, 1971 - gifted

Hermes, Patricia. I Hate Being Gifted. Pocket Books, 1990 - gifted

Hesse, Karen. Wish on a Unicorn. Puffin Books, 1991 - mental retardation

Jones, Ron. The Acorn People. Bantam Books, 1976 - physical disabilities

Kaye, Marilyn. Real Heroes. Avon Books, 1993 - health impairments/AIDS

Mathis, Sharon Bell. Listen for the Fig Tree. Puffin Books, 1974 - visual impairments, at-risk

Metzger, Lois. Barry's Sister. Macmillan Publishing, 1992 - cerebral palsy

McDaniel, Lurlent. Baby Alicia Is Dying. Bantam Books, 1993 - health impairments/AIDS

Neufeld, John. Lisa, Bright and Dark. Penguin Books, 1969 - mental illness

Peck, Richard. Remembering the Good Times. Dell Publishing, 1985 - gifted

Scott, Virginia. Belonging. Gallaudet University Press, 1986 - hearing impairments

Shyer, Marlene. Welcome Home, Jellybean. Aladdin, 1978 - mental retardation

Taylor, Theodore. The Cay. Avon Books, 1969 - visual impairments

Voigt, Cynthia. Izzy, Willy-Nilly. Ballantine Books, 1986 - physical disabilities

Wood, June Rae.The Man Who Loved Clowns. Putnam, 1992 - down's syndrome

Books Written by Parents

Barron, Judy and Sean.There's a Boy in Here. Avon Books, 1992 - autism

Buck, Pearl S.The Child Who Never Grew. Woodbine House, 1992 - mental retardation

Dorris, Michael. The Broken Cord. HarperCollins, 1989 - fetal alcohol syndrome

Marsh, Jayne (Editor). From the Heart: On Being the Mother of a Child with Special Needs. Woodbine House, 1995 - parenting

Meyer, Donald (Editor). Uncommon Fathers: Reflections on Raising a Child with a Disabilitiy. Woodbine House, 1995 - parenting

Schulze, Craig. When Snow Turns to Rain: One Family's Struggle to Solve the Riddle of Autism. Woodbine House, 1993 - autism

Stehli, Annabel. The Sound of a Miracle. Avon Books, 1991 - autism

Taylor, Denny. Learning Denied. Heinemann, 1991 - learning disabilities, assessment

Trainer, Marilyn. Differences in Common: Straight Talk on Mental Retardation, Down Syndrome, and Life. Woodbine House, 1991 - Down's Syndrome

Books Written by Teachers

Hayden, Torey. Ghost Girl. Avon Books, 1991 - mental illness

_____Somebody Else's Kids. Avon Books, 1981 - behavioral disorders

_____One Child. Avon Books, 1980 - behavioral disorders

MacCracken, Mary.Turnabout Children. Penguin Books, Inc., 1986 - behavioral disorders, learning disabilities

_____City Kid. Penguin Books, Inc., 1981 - behavioral disorders

_____Lovey, a Very Special Child. Penguin Books, Inc., 1976 - behavioral disorders

Autobiographical Books

Kaufman, Sandra. Retarded Isn't Stupid, Mom! Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co., 1988 - mental retardation.

Keller, Helen. The Story of My Life. Bantam Books, 1990 - visual impairments

Little, Jean. Little by Little. Puffin Books, 1989 - visual impairments

Schmitt, Abraham. Brilliant Idiot. Good Books, 1994 - dyslexia

Williams, Donna. Somebody Somewhere. Times Books, 1994 - autism

_____Nobody Nowhere. Times Books, 1992 - autism

Other Books

Brown, Tricia. Someone Special Just Like You. Henry Holt & Company, 1982 - disabilities

Cheltenhan Elementary School Kindergartners. We Are All Alike...We Are All Different. Scholastic, Inc., 1991 - individuality

Gwynne, Fred. A Chocolate Moose for Dinner. Aladdin Paperbacks, 1976 - language disorders

Holy Cross School Kindergartners. What's Under Your Hood, Orson? Scholastic, Inc., 1993 - identity

Nikola-Lisa, W. Bein' With You This Way. Lee & Low Books, Inc., 1994 - individuality

Parish, Peggy.Teach Us, Amelia Bedelia. Scholastic, Inc., 1977 - language disorders

Payne, Lauren. Just Because I Am: A Child's Book of Affirmation. Free Spirit Publishing, 1994 - self acceptance

St. Brigid's Head Start Children. Together We Are Together. Scholastic, Inc., 1992 - individuality

Simon, Norma. Why Am I Different? Albert Whitman & Company, 1976 - individuality

Stein, Sara Bonnet. About Handicaps. Walker Publishing Co., 1974 - disabilties in general

Thompson, Mary. My Brother, Matthew. Woodbine House, Inc., 1992 - disabilities

Westridge Young Writers Workshop. Kids Explore the Gifts of Children with Special Needs. John Muir Publications, 1994 - disabilities


Dickens-Smith, M. (1995). The effect of inclusion training on teacher attitude toward inclusion. Chicago Public Schools, Chicago, IL. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 381 486).

Heim, A.B. (1994). Beyond the stereotypes: Characters with mental disabilities in children's books. School Library Journal, 40(9), pp. 139-42.

Fein, R.L., & Ginsberg, A.H. (1978). Realistic literature about the handicapped. The Reading Teacher, 37(1), pp. 802-05.

Radencich, M.C. (1986). Literature for children and adolescents about people who happen to have a handicap. Techniques: A Journal for Remedial Education and Counseling, 2, pp. 364-69.

Parish, R.S., Nunn, G.P., & Hattrop, D. (1982). An attempt to reduce negative attitudes of future teachers toward exceptional children. College Student Journal, 16(3), pp. 254-57.

Stroud, J.G. (1981).The handicapped in adolescent fiction. Journal of Reading,24(6), pp. 519-22.

Sharon Andrews is an assistant professor of Education at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where she teaches methods courses and supervises student teachers for the Education Department. Her areas of interest include reading and writing in the content-area classroom and holistic teaching at the secondary and post-high-school levels.