Putting the Pieces Together

Spectrum Services
Phone:  (978) 235-4840
Fax:       (978) 371-9271
Putting the Pieces Together 
Serving the ASD Community since 1977


  About the Founder


L. Michelle V. Touw
Autism Specialist
Founder of Spectrum Services

In 1975, when asked to help a friend at a summer program, Leslie Michelle Touw encountered autistic children for the first time.  The director lent her  "A Circle of Children" written by one of their teachers, Mary MacCracken.  Michelle read it that night and knew this was what she wanted to do with her life.

Since then she has been passionate about teaching children and young adults with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)* how to make sense of the world, to relax, have fun with others, become confident and realize their full potential. 

Michelle's philosophy is to first understand the student, then select the approaches and materials that will work for that student (versus training them to fit into a 'program'). Life is not a program!

Over the years Michelle has acquired expertize in several teaching approaches from the early psycho-dynamic developmental model (a therapeutic, relationship-oriented method) through Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and Cognitive-Behavior methods.  She employs them along with the best practices and materials which she has found most efficacious for her students. 

Michelle has worked with individuals aged 2-27 at the League School of Boston, at public schools in Lincoln & Marlborough, MA, and in the early intervention programs Merrimack Special Education Collaborative  &  Community Healthlink Lipton Early Intervention.  She has also privately tutored clients. Michelle has provided them with the skills and confidence to be successful individuals while retaining their wonderful gifts and unique personalities.

In 2000 Ms. Touw was asked to present at  the Western Massachusetts Special Educators Conference.  Over the next 12 years she has made a few presentations a year, conducted staff trainings and worked with private clients  while continuing to teach full time. 

In 2012 Michelle left full time teaching  to focus on operating
Spectrum Services.

In addition to continuing her work with the autistic community, Michelle enjoys gardening, playing tennis and traveling the world with her Dutch husband.


B. S Psychology
Double major with Education K-12
– Skidmore College -1977     

M. Ed. - Severe Special Needs    
      -Lesley College -1978


Special Education Teacher (1978-2006)

Teacher K-12, (1977-2006)

Preschool (1982-2006)

CPR, AED & First Aid (current)

*ASD includes Autism, Aspergers, and Pervasive Developmental Disorder

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