Authors: National Association of Special Education Teachers

From an early age, autism spectrum disorder has played a significant role in Maja Watkins’ life. Not only is her older brother Zack on the spectrum, Watkins is a social and emotional learning specialist who works with children and adults diagnosed with ASD. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, ASD is a developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior. It’s largely marked by difficulty in social communication or interaction and repetitive behaviors. Autism is considered a spectrum disorder because there is a high degree of variability among the individuals diagnosed. Growing up, Watkins experienced a number of instances where her and her brother’s communication styles didn’t always align, especially in the area of humor. Read More

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