Incorporate cool down or relaxation activities into the school day (e.g., yoga, deep breathing).

This website is dedicated to promoting inclusive schooling and exploring positive ways of supporting students with autism and other disabilities. Most of my work involves collaborating with schools to create environments, lessons, and experiences that are inclusive, respectful, and accessible for all learners.


Coaster is here!

Posted on December 13, 2019 in News

Do you love dogs as much as I do? If so, read on!

A few years ago (when I adopted my own dog), I had an idea for a children’s book about a shelter pet.

The book is about a dog who is admired (in part) for his snazzy wheels.

Here is the description of the book:

Coaster lives in an animal shelter with many puppies (and a few kittens) who are looking for homes. All the pets know he will be the first of the bunch to be adopted. After all, he has a fine coat, floppy ears, and a shiny nose. Best of all, however, he has wheels— speedy, spin-y, and somewhat squeaky wheels! When the people come, however, Coaster is not selected. Days pass and his “perfect person” does not appear. Coaster is so confused: How can everyone pass by such an amazing dog? Don’t these visitors understand the wonder and beauty of wheels?

A little backstory about Coaster:

A few years ago, I sat on a plane and wrote the whole story. Then, I got overwhelmed with my work and promptly forgot about my picture book. In January of this year, one of my resolutions was to go back and finish the project. I’m so happy to share that I not only finished it, but…for once in my life, I actually paid attention to one of my New Year’s resolutions! 😊

There is not a real Coaster in my life, but this story was inspired by several different things I saw and experienced. Here are a few of them:

  1. When I was adopting my own rescue dog, Lacy, I learned about the dogs that often have to wait longer than others to find homes including senior pets, big dogs, and dogs with disabilities. Learning this made me want to write about adoption from a dog’s point of view.
  2. I read a story about a deaf women who taught her deaf dog sign language and it made me think about how lucky that dog was to find that owner.
  3. I was watching Including Samuel (amazing documentary by Dan Habib) and Betsy, Samuel’s mom, was saying (in essence) that people without wheels often talk about them as if they are a burden when—to many—wheels (and wheelchairs) are a gift. As Dominick Evans points out in this blogpost, wheels are freedom.

    Even though my book is about a pet, I thought this idea about the wonder of wheels would be nice to amplify.

I hope you will all enjoy reading about Coaster as much as I enjoyed writing about him. And…if you do get the book (now or in the future) and are feeling generous, I would be so grateful if you could review it on Amazon or related sites—it’s such a great way to spread the word and it will help me find new audiences for my favorite fictional pooch.

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