Saturday, August 31, 2013

When Things Go Horribly Wrong...

"Time to read a story James..."
                "Can I punch myself in the face instead?"

Ever have a conversation like this with your kid?  Let me go back to fill in some history that led up to this particular conversational tidbit...

James likes pretty things... He started taking things shiny and pretty things from others without them knowing several years ago.

James likes science... He borrowed his sister's Physics notebook and Physics textbook last year because he knows he has a lot to learn.

James likes stuffed animals... He nabbed his sisters teddy, stuffed cat, and other stuffed treasures and hid them in his room.

James loves video games... Today he took daddy's credit card, out of the wallet while daddy was sleeping to buy a new game for his 3DS.  This card is used to buy many things that James wants and needs.  James can't remember where it went after he used it.  The 3DS and his other electronics have been confiscated until he finds the card.

James is distraught because the card is lost and his favorite past time is not happening until the card is back in daddy's possession.

Enter conversation from the top..... It is going to be a really long 3 day weekend!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


So we started week 3 of school yesterday and I can tell you that things haven't been perfect but they have been okay.  Let me give you the highlights to catch you up to date... day 3 James almost got suspended for throwing a book at his teacher (his aide took lunch during writing so what is a kid to do?)... his first aide left that day never to return (apparently not because of anything he did or didn't do)... enter new aide on day 4... things go pretty well episodes of shutting down but nothing violently spectacular.... yesterday, after a horrible 2 hour commute into work, I got the call... checked my phone and the name of his school showed up.  I tentatively answered it because there are only 2 reasons why they would be calling at 9:45 AM. First, James is sick and needs to be picked up ASAP or second, he is in trouble.  I answered and found the AP on the other end of the line (CRAP).  He explained to me that James would be receiving a referral from his gym teacher and went to tell me the reason.  The class had been running the mile and James was doing well.  At one point one of his friends fell.  James was far ahead and turn to see his downed friend so he looped back to help him up. (to be honest my first thought when the AP was starting to tell me about this was , Oh CRAP, James kicked the other kid!  Oh wait... that was 3rd grade!) >>click here<< >>and another<<  (I am sure that we could all come up with a thousand acts of humanity to put here).  Anyway, his gym teacher told James to keep running and he would assist the child who had fallen.  James focused  on what he thought was the greater good and refused to run because his friend was hurt.  Enter... the first referral and detention of the year!  When James was told by the teacher that he would be getting a referral to the office, he just replied, "okay, thank you". (the end of the referral said that James seemed happy to be getting out of running the mile.)

Here is my response email...

Thank you Mr. H**** for calling me this morning to discuss the issues that had happened this morning with James. He hadn't given us the information about not being able to wear his red and white Ash Ketchum hat.  We were under the impression that if the hat was completely red then it couldn't be worn.  James is really attached to this hat but we will discuss this with him and make sure he keeps it at home from now on.
As for the incident in gym, James is a very black and white thinker and we have spent years teaching him to be empathetic towards others.  For those who don't know about the referral it is because James didn't comply to his gym teachers request for him to continue to run and not worry about another student who had fallen.  James was apparently very focused on helping the student and repeatedly didn't comply with the directive to return to running.  He was told that he would get a referral and he did get one for not listening to his teachers requests. 
I understand that James needs to comply to things adults tell him to do, however, James should be able to show his growth in social interactions if it isn't something dangerous.  I am confident that if he had been able to assist his friend that he would have happily complied with the directive after making sure the other child was okay.  If he isn't allowed to follow through you run the risk of him shutting down and not doing anything. 
To me, this incident warrants a "good friend" recognition instead of a referral.  Again, I understand that James needs to learn to comply when he is given something to do but I don't want to take away the side of James that is the sweet, amazing, side of his humanity and turn him into a compliant robot.  Sometimes standing up for what is right is more important.  I am home on Wednesday and I will be with him during his detention showing that I am proud that he tried to do the right thing but was not allowed to do so.  Please let me know where to meet him at 2:55 on Wednesday.  Thank you 

Only 169 more school days left until summer vacation!!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Hang My Picture in the Mother Hall of Shame!!!!!

We have all read the blogs on the things we thought we would never have to tell our Autistic kids to stop doing such as...

  • stop licking the ... (fill in the blank)
  • stop saying ... (fill in the blank)
  • (the ever popular) stop stripping OR stop taking off your underwear
  • stop eating the cat food (James's favorite as a toddler)
I am sure there are a million more you can come up with but tonight I am ashamed.  I was heading back to the car from the grocery store and it happened... I turned back to see my husband and James walking towards me. All of a sudden I heard words coming out of my mouth I never expected... "Jamesie... STOP reading... you are in a parking lot!"  I think I need to reconsider my parenting ability.... Stop reading... Stop reading... I should hang my own picture in the Mother Hall of Shame!  My only excuse is I love my kid more than I love that he was actually reading.  I hope he will read again... someday!! 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Typical James Conversation

Mom... What kind of animal am I eating?
Like on a farm?
Why do we eat chicken?
          Because it is delicious!
Well don't eat the rooster because what will happen if you don't have a clock?  You can use the rooster to wake you up...

Good thinking little man but eat up because it is almost time for bed!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

4th Grade Letter to Teacher

It is that time again.  Haircuts, new clothes, new backpacks, new lunch boxes, and meetings to get James to know the people who will be instrumental in helping him succeed in the next year of school. (We met the new AP and will be meeting his his teacher the Friday before school starts.) School starts next week and I feel prepared; well, as prepared as I can feel.  I have done everything I can think of to make sure 4th grade will start off well. I found out that James's aide will be the one who finished the year with him after me pleading with the district to provide an aide and them telling me "NO" until he got suspended for 5 days for the exact reasons I told them I wanted an aide.  Not exactly the way I wanted it to go down but... well done James?... I guess.

Anyway... below is my letter to this year's teacher and then some resources (thanks Mama and snagglebox); also some ADHD adaptions for the classroom that any teacher can put in place with very little effort and time.  I just hope this year will be the year that James discoverers the joy of learning.  Well. a mum can dream can't she?

>>letter to teacher<< >>group work<<  >>paying attention<<  >>literal thinking<<  >>why transitions can be hard<<  >>making transitions easier<<  >>got to be prefect<<  >>strategies for working with ADHD in classroom<<  >>accommodations in classroom<<

Have a very happy first day of school whenever it may happen in your corner of the world! PEACE.