Answer Key: Sesame Street Muppet and Autism Controversy

Lesson Plan: Sesame Street Muppet Sparks Controversy Among Autism Groups

II. While Reading Activities

Word Inference

  1. autism |ˈôˌtizəm| noun a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by difficulty in communicating and forming relationships with other people and in using language and abstract concepts.
  2. embroiled emˈbroilimˈbroil|verb [with object] (often as adjective embroiled) involve (someone) deeply in an argument, conflict, or difficult situation: she became embroiled in a dispute between two women she hardly knew | the movie’s about a journalist who becomes embroiled with a nightclub owner.
  3. overwhelm |ˌōvərˈ(h)welm| verb [with object] (usually be overwhelmed) have a strong emotional effect on: I was overwhelmed with guilt.
  4. advocate noun |ˈadvəkət| a person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy: he was an untiring advocate of economic reform.
  5. stigma  |ˈstiɡmə| noun (plural stigmas or especially in sense 2 stigmata |stiɡˈmätə, ˈstiɡmətə| ) a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person: the stigma of having gone to prison will always be with me | debt has lost its stigma and is now a part of everyday life.
  6. let [someone] down PHRASAL VERB- fail to support or help someone as they had hoped or expected. The voters  felt let down went their candidate lost the election.
  7. rely |rəˈlī| verb (relies, relying, relied) [no object] (rely on/upon) depend on with full trust or confidence: I know I can rely on your discretion.
  8. mimic |ˈmimik| verb (mimics, mimicking, mimicked) [with object] imitate (someone or their actions or words), typically in order to entertain or ridicule: she mimicked Eileen’s voice.
  9. suppress  |səˈpres| verb [with object] prevent the development, action, or expression of (a feeling, impulse, idea, etc.); restrain: she could not suppress a rising panic.
  10. representation  |ˌreprəˌzenˈtāSH(ə)n| noun – the action of speaking or acting on behalf of someone or the state of being so represented: asylum-seekers should be guaranteed good legal advice and representation.


Grammar Focus: Word -Recognition

John Elder Robison, an autistic person and neurodiversity scholar at the College of William & Mary, said it is important for autistic people to speak for the community, including those with intense support needs, to show the world that we have voices.


Reading Comprehension: Fill-ins

Many self-advocates credit autism-rights activist Jim Sinclair for starting the movement, with a pointed open letter to parents in 1993 that criticized the culture surrounding autism and the emphasis on a “cure.”