Children with Mental Retardation cover

Children with Mental Retardation

Children with Mental Retardation: A Parents’ Guide
Smith, Ed.

Submitted by a public library in Illinois, this one is pretty obvious. It uses old terminology, for starters. Wikipedia has a good article that explains the history of terminology for what we now refer to as intellectual disability. It also explains something I’ve never heard of: the “euphemism treadmill.” Basically, no matter what terminology is acceptable now, it will be considered an insult later. In other words, library books on special needs have to be kept up to date so that they reflect the current terminology at the very least.

There are also advances in therapies, treatments, and learning strategies that need to be kept up to date, plus the further definition of conditions that fall under intellectual disability. Here’s a good explanation from the American Psychiatric Association of what intellectual disability is. It’s not clear to me in the limited pages submitted (images below) what conditions this book covers. Downs Syndrome? Autism? How about what the APA calls “co-occurring conditions” like ADHD, anxiety, and cerebral palsy?


FAQ Physical Disabilities cover

Joy Berry Talks About Physical Disabilities

I feel like we’ve featured a lot of books by Joy Berry on this site over the years, and we should give her a category, like we did with Doris Sandford. Actually, I think Joy Berry’s books are pretty good and simply a victim of time. This one is no exception.

The illustrations are cute, the characters are culturally diverse, and the question-and-answer format is helpful.

What I think is weird about this book is that there is a bored-looking kid on every page! There they are, head in hands, rolling eyes, barely interested in what’s going on.