What we do


A goal of the AIR-P/ATN is to accelerate the adoption of effective interventions, tools, and systems management. One way the network meets this goal is by developing toolkits. A “toolkit” is a set of print or electronic materials that contain educational tools designed to support families and providers of children affected by autism in the management of their care. Toolkits may also be targeted directly to the children to educate them or support them in the management of their own care. Toolkits provide information on a focused topic with a specific goal such as supporting a family in making a health related decision for their child with ASD. Please explore the toolkits we have available for parents and professionals.

100 Day Kit

The Autism Speaks 100 Day Kit for Newly Diagnosed Families of Young Children was created specifically for families of children ages 4 and under to make the best possible use of the 100 days following their child's diagnosis of autism.

A Clinician's Guide to Providing Effective Feedback to Families Affected by Autism

Designed to provide health care professionals with instructional support for leading a productive diagnostic feedback session. The manual and videos focus on all aspects of providing information about a diagnosis of autism - verbal, written and body language.

A Friend's Guide to Autism

This tool kit will serve as a guide to help you learn: more about autism, how your friend may be feeling if this is a new diagnosis, how to support your friend, how you and your family can interact with and support the child with autism

A Grandparents Guide to Autism

This Tool Kit is specially designed for grandparents of children who have been diagnosed with autism. This Tool Kit will help you learn about autism and its impact on your family, discover ways to support your children who may be struggling with their child’s autism diagnosis, find out ways to develop the best relationship you can with your grandchild, and feel supported and encouraged so you do not feel lonely or overwhelmed.

A Guide for Managing Constipation

Many children have constipation. Children with autism might have more problems with constipation than other children. Difficulty with things like sitting on the toilet and eating different foods can make treating constipation challenging. This tool kit is to help parents manage constipation in their children with autism.

A Parents Guide to ABA

This tool kit is an informational guide to Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA). It is designed to provide you with a better understanding of ABA, how your child can benefit, and where/how you can seek ABA services.

A Parents Guide to Autism

This Tool Kit will help you learn about autism and how it may impact your family, find strategies and resources for raising a child with autism, find support so you don't feel alone or isolated, reduce the negative impact of the diagnosis on your family, promote a positive future for your child and family.

A Parents Guide to Toilet Training

Each child with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is different. But children with ASD have some common problems that can make toileting training hard for them. Knowing about these problems can help you come up with different ways to meet your child’s needs. This tool kit provides caregivers tips to increase toileting success by teaching toileting skills, providing advice on preparing schedules and routines and promoting visual supports.

A Siblings Guide to Autism

A Sibling’s Guide to Autism was created for siblings who have a brother or sister diagnosed with autism. We hope this guide will be helpful in opening a dialogue with your other children as they are adjusting to life with a sibling on the autism spectrum. The intention is to create an opportunity for siblings to focus on their feelings, reactions to their sibling’s diagnosis and get information about autism.


The goal of this tool kit is to provide a basic knowledge of advocacy and negotiation skills. The kit will show how to apply these skills to different situations throughout the lifespan of an individual with autism. The information in this kit has been provided by experts in the field who have both professional and personal experience with advocacy and autism. Each section has been prepared by a different person or group of people whose expertise is in that specific area. We hope you will find the information informative and relatable.

An Introduction to Behavioral Health Treatments

Behavioral challenges are a common problem for children with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Many children with ASD have challenges managing certain behaviors such as aggression or not following directions in addition to experiencing limitations in communication or social skills. This tool kit is designed to provide parents of children with ASD with an overview of in-home strategies as well as tips to teach and increase desirable behaviors and decrease behavior problems.

Análisis aplicado de la conducta

Este conjunto de recursos es una guía de información sobre el Análisis Aplicado de la Conducta (AAC, también conocido como Applied Behavior Analysis, o ABA, por sus siglas en inglés). Ha sido creado para mejorar su comprensión del AAC, exponer cómo éste puede beneficiar a su hijo, e informarle sobre dónde/cómo puede obtener servicios de AAC.

Asperger Syndrome and High Functioning Autism

A toolkit to assist families in getting the critical information they need within the 100 days of receiving an Asperger Syndrome or High Functioning Autism diagnosis.

Autism and Medication: Safe and Careful Use 

More than half of children with autism take medicine at some point during their childhood. Deciding to use medicine to treat children with autism is a difficult decision for most families. The Autism and Medication: Safe and Careful Use tool kit was created to help families work with their healthcare providers to make sure that when medicine is chosen as a form of treatment, it is taken safely and effectively.

Autism Friendly Youth Organizations Guide

The information in this toolkit will be useful for helping integrate youth with autism into your existing programs, communicating with parents, and training your staff. With help from respected experts in the field of autism and special education, experienced parents and caregivers, we have included an introduction to autism and specific strategies that will allow you to lead the way for youth with autism to have the same formative experiences through community organizations that are available to their typical peers.

Blood Draws: A Provider's Guide

The purpose of this toolkit is to provide a guide to strategies that you and your practice can use to help children with ASD more easily complete routine medical procedures and blood draws while reducing the stress felt by your patients and their parents.

Blood Draws: Parents Guide

Has your child with ASD had a negative experience during a doctor’s visit that has left him or her feeling anxious? Does the prospect of having your child’s blood drawn make you anxious as well? Perhaps this anxiety has even prevented you from seeking needed tests and treatments. This toolkit was designed with you and your child in mind. It provides a variety of tools to help you and your child to prepare for future medical visits and reduce the stress and worry that may come with blood draws.

Challenging Behaviors

Challenging behaviors represent some of the most concerning and stressful features of autism. These behaviors can often cause harm or damage, family and staff stress, isolation, and caregiver burnout. Parents may feel guilty or responsible, but it is important to know that you should not blame yourself for behaviors that you find difficult. Sometimes, the extraordinary steps parents go through for their children with complex needs might not be enough, and additional supports and resources might be necessary.

Community-based Skills Assessment (CSA): Developing a Personalized Transition Plan

This assessment tool was developed for Autism Speaks through a contract with Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center. While a review of the literature did not produce an assessment tool that matched the needs of youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), it did assist in illuminating the critical areas of functional life skills. The project selected these functional skills areas based upon the instruments that were reviewed and purported to contribute to the successful functioning of an individual into adulthood.

Cómo enseñar a su hijo a ir al baño solo

El enseñar a los niños con trastornos del espectro autista (TEA) a usar el baño solos puede ser todo un reto.

Consejos Prácticos Cómo Mejorar el Sueño en Niños Autistas

Usando un Horario Visual para Enséñar una Rutina para la Hora de Irse a Dormir

Dental Professionals Tool Kit

This tool kit is designed for dental professionals. It provides general information about Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and specific information that may help dental professionals better serve the needs of children with ASD.

Dental Tool Kit

Oral health is a very important component of healthy daily living. But for some children with autism, oral health habits can be challenging. Our hope is that this guide will provide information for families to help begin a lifetime of good oral care.

Employment Tool Kit

Autism Speaks would like to help you with your employment search by giving you tools and tips while you look for a job. As an adult on the autism spectrum, you have strengths and abilities that employers are just beginning to understand. Therefore, we have written this guide to help you research, find and keep employment in the current, competitive labor market.

Estrategias para fomentar el sueño en adolescentes con trastorno del espectro autista

Esta guía está diseñada para las familias de adolescentes con trastornos del espectro autista (TEA). Muchas personas con TEA tienen problemas para dormir a lo largo de su vida. Esto puede ser estresante para ellos y sus familias.

Estrategias para Mejorar el Sueño

Este folleto informativo ha sido creado para proporcionar a los padres una serie de estrategias para mejorar el sueño de sus hijos con trastornos del espectro autista (TEA). Muchos niños con TEA tienen dificultades para dormir, lo cual puede ser estresante para ellos y para sus familias. Las sugerencias que aparecen en este folleto se basan en la investigación y en la experiencia clínica de expertos en el campo del sueño.

Estudio de las conductas alimentarias en el autismo

Esta guía está diseñada para ayudar a las familias afectadas por TEA a entender las conductas alimentarias, guíarlos en cuanto a cómo lidiar con los problemas del hábito de comer, y repasar algunas preguntas comunes acerca de la alimentación, que tienen las familias.

Exploring Feeding Behavior in Autism

This tool kit is designed to help families affected by ASD understand eating behaviors, give guidance on how to address feeding issues, and review some common questions that families have about eating problems.

Financial Planning Tool Kit

A tool kit to provide you with essential information and guidance you need to develop a plan for your child’s financial future.

First Concern to Action

If you have a concern about how your child is communicating, interacting, or behaving, you are probably wondering what to do next. The information provided in this tool kit can help you sort that out. The First Concern to Action Tool Kit was developed to provide families of children under the age of five with: An overview of early childhood development; Guidance on what to do if you have a concern about your child’s development; Information about obtaining an evaluation for your child’s development and treatment options, if needed.

Having an Electroencephalogram (EEG): A Guide for Parents

EEGs can be difficult for all individuals, but often especially for children and adults with autism. This guide was designed to prepare parents for what they need to do and to understand how they can help their child do well during the procedure. The guide includes visual supports, parent questionnaires to share with the provider, answers to frequently asked questions and much more.

Having an Electroencephalogram (EEG): A Guide for Providers

Many EEG technicians may not know much about autism and therefore may not be able to help make the procedure go smoothly and successfully. This guide for providers gives information about ASD, the unique aspects of the diagnosis that are important to consider, ways that parents and caregivers can help prepare their child before the procedure and how to help children and families during the actual EEG.

Housing and Residential Support

A tool kit to assist individuals and families as they identify and secure appropriate residential supports and services.

IEP Guide

This flowchart is a broad guide in helping to work through an IEP dispute.

Is It autism and If so, What Next? A Guide for Adults

Is It Autism and If So, What Next? A Guide for Adults is a tool designed to help assist adults who suspect they may have autism, as well as those who have been recently diagnosed with the disorder.

La Pica: GuĂ­a Para Padres

Este manual es una guía para padres de niños que comen artículos no comestibles(pica). Sirve de ayuda a los padres para aprender sobre la pica: qué es, por qué sucede, a quién pedir ayuda, y maneras de tratarla y prevenirla.

La Pica: GuĂ­a Para Profesionales

Este manual es una guía para los médicos de cabecera no familiarizados con el tratamiento médico y conductual de la pica en niños con autism.

L’apprentissage de la propreté

L’apprentissage de la propreté peut constituer un vrai défi pour les enfants atteints d’un trouble du spectre autistique (TSA).

Manual de la Primera Preocupacion a la Accion

Si le preocupa la comunicación, la interacción y el comportamiento de su hijo, probablemente se esté preguntando qué debe hacer.

Manual para los Primeros 100 DĂ­as

Un manual para ayudar a las familias a obtener la informaciĂłn crĂ­tica que necesitan durante los primeros 100 dĂ­as luego de un diagnostic de autismo.

Medication Decision Aid

A decision aid can help you work with your child’s health care provider when making important medical decisions. There is not always one “right” choice. The decision aid can help you understand the possible risks and benefits of different treatments. It will help you decide what is most important to you and your family and help you choose an option. The goal for a decision aid is to help you work with your child’s health care provider to choose a treatment that matches your needs and values.

Melatonin and Sleep Problems in ASD: A Guide for Parents

Children with ASD have problems with sleep. Improving sleep habits helps many children, including those with ASD, to get better sleep. For some children with ASD, sleep problems happen even with good sleep habits. Melatonin is a common medicine your doctor or healthcare provider may suggest to help improve sleep. This tool kit is designed to provide parents with information about melatonin.

Participant's Guide to Autism Drug Research

The goal of this guide is to both answer common questions and pose additional ones that may be important for you to consider. The decision of whether or not to participate in autism drug studies should be guided by your goals and values as well as a clear understanding of potential risks and benefits and possible demands upon you, your child and your family.

Pica: A Guide for Parents

This tool kit is a guide for parents who have children who eat non-food items (pica). It will help parents learn about pica – what it is, why it happens, who to go to for help, and ways to try and prevent it.

Pica: A Guide for Professionals

This tool kit is a guide for primary care medical providers unfamiliar with the medical and behavioral treatment of the pica of children with autism.

Postsecondary Education Guide

This guide is designed to help you and your family explore the different opportunities and learning
environments after leaving high school. With only about one third of youth with autism attending college in young adulthood, Autism Speaks wants to offer the best possible resources on this topic to help you explore all of the various options available to you.

Puberty and Adolescence Resource: A Guide for Parents

Puberty can be a time of mixed feelings for parents and pre-teens. It may be a time of pride and celebration, as well as a time of worry and confusion. It is hard for pre-teens to understand the many changes that come along with puberty. Also, parents may feel unsure of how to explain these changes to their child.

Quick Tips Improving Sleep for Children with Autism

Using a Visual Schedule to Teach Bedtime Routines

Read Me First: Tool Kits Overview

The tool kits are products of on-going activities of Autism Speaks’ Autism Treatment Network (ATN) through its federal funding as the Autism Intervention Research Network on Physical Health.

Recursos para los Proveedores: La Flebotomía para Niños con Autismo

CĂłmo Facilitar la ExtracciĂłn de Sangre: Ayude a su Paciente Autista

Safe Medication Use

This tool kit is for families of children with autism* and other neurodevelopmental disorders who have decided to use medicines to help treat their child’s challenging behavior or manage emotional issues.

School Community Guide

The purpose of this kit is to provide helpful information about your students with autism and tools and
strategies to achieve positive interactions and increase learning for all members of the school community. It will provide valuable information for general education and administrative school staff, aides, office staff, bus drivers, nurses, custodians, classmates & family members who interact with students with autism.

Strategies to Improve Sleep

This informational booklet is designed to provide parents with strategies to improve sleep in their child affected by autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

Tools for Successful Vision Exams

This video is also appropriate for optometrists who are not familiar with autism. Examination methods used here may differ somewhat from current standard-of-care practices: they are suggested for sensitive patients who may not be able to tolerate some sensations on the surface of the eye or around the face.

Transition Tool Kit

We hope that this kit will serve as a guide that can provide you with options to think about and explore as you and your adolescent with autism begin to plan for adulthood.

Visual Support

A visual support refers to using a picture or other visual item to communicate with a child who has difficulty understanding or using language. Visual supports can be photographs, drawings, objects, written words, or lists. Research has shown that visual supports work well as a way to communicate.