25 June 2015

Autism and school : what to do?

After bullying sent my older two into home schooling, trust me, the last thing, the absolute last thing I want, is to home school Samuel.  The difference is with Autism Im finding I have no choice.

The short story : set him up for years on two anti psychotic drugs so that the anxiety is quietened and he can attend normal school.  Normal school wont be changing their teaching strategies, wont get through to him most of the time, but we can tick the box that we have funding, that we have an aide that isnt a real teacher, and we can tick the box that he attended.

But what is the trade off again?  drugs and attedance..... or what?

A dear friend put me onto the Autistic videos that feature on the TED website.  It was 9 lectures of enlightenment for me.  Ive been to speech pathologist, psychologist, occupational therapist and pediatrician but NONE of them have explained Autism to me.  But now I know.

And from the very latest research my plan has merit.

So what is the plan?  Mentors.  Qualified music teacher, community garden worker, horse riding instructor... whoever I can find really.  I am writing down everything that is happening to Samuel each day.  And Im writing down what his interests are.  If I can follow through from his interests to introducing a mentor.... then we might just have something.  This is how Samuel's lateral thinking, anxious mind works : it will pursue a particular interest and then it will learn it well and retain information.  An Autistic lady, Temple Grandin, talks about mentors being essential to Autistic children.  It just fits the way they learn.

Samuel's anxiety has lessened markedly.  He is eating so many different things now.  Three days ago he began to draw.  Im keeping all his drawings.  He hasnt drawn like this ever.  And he is nearly 10.  Im afraid he will stop.

From another perspective, well Thomas says Samuel is just naughty and is a retard.  Ah to be 18 and self absorbed.  I wonder about Thomas sometimes.  He has felt such jealousy over Samuel since the day he was born.  Thomas needs to find a way to connect with his father and he needs to go see him.  Thomas needs to tell his father he feels shocking rejection.  Rejection that cripples him.

I cant think about how much of this might be down to me.  Ive just got to do my best.  Get as much support for everyone the best way I can.

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