“Millions of children around the world love Thomas the Tank Engine. Parents everywhere have watched their children learn, grow and have fun with this cheeky little blue engine.
For many children with autistic spectrum disorders, Thomas plays an even more important role. A 2002 study by the National Autistic Society in the UK shows that Thomas the Tank Engine helps break through the barriers of many children with autism and Asperger syndrome.
Parents of children with ASD have known for years that Thomas and his friends have special value to their children. The report confirms this anecdotal evidence, stating that children with ASD associate far more strongly with Thomas the Tank Engine than with other children’s characters. Some parents of children with ASD have reported leaps of emotion, imagination and symbolic play that were unimaginable before the child’s relationship with Thomas.” (thanks to walker)