Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Written by a father with a son with Aspergers kindly said I could share with you.
As for school strategies, here are a few I have noted I use for my boy:
a) if bullying is not a serious issue at school, getting him there real early means he is in with unattached people whose friend networks are not yet in place, people who have time, quietness for special interest stuff, and he feels less like a guest and more like the host.
b) it is important to teach your child (on a safe road) how NOT to cross the road, before teaching him how to, and that there is 5-12 types of crossing he needs to practice on as generalisation is a weak point with most if not all of us.
c) encourage the teacher to offer a 'get out of jail free' card to your child and to note down when he chooses to use it if being punished, menting down, getting niggly, looking tired, wants to skip a class exercise. My boy has got quite astute about when to pull his card each fortnight, and it points unexpectedly towards tiredness issues at the end of the day rather than conflict issues.
d) don't be too averse to a cardboard surround being placed around your child for an hour each day to complete a topic without interruption if that's a problem (finishing work). The boost from finishing quite often eclipses the fear of being singled out as different. Get him to call it his "blinkers" and tell others it is to stop him being distracted by others (i.e. the problem is others, not him)
e) see the teacher more often without fear - a minute at a time is fine (they get interested in what parents are interested in), and recognise one of the very best investments you can make is in courses, books, videos on Asperger's for the teacher, in-class special interest materials for your son to shine with in front of other pupils (puts to bed the 'retard' concept pretty quickly)(i.e. globes, maps of stars, train pictures, etc.). It is important to reinforce healthy strategies a teacher is using at home, or your child will resent the difference eventually, the uneveness, the lack of pattern.
f) don't be shy about doubling the treat you pop in a school lunch for your child to share with another, and after school ask him what he did with it. At eating time, often a friendship is built more around food/sharing, and chatting/playing (etc.) is less possible thankfully.
g) Ask the school to open the library or an area just outside it, for pupils to play chess/checkers or swap cards etc. Discrimination against the more academic/less sporty kids has to end. The playground set-up is too biased towards 'healthy' stuff that often is less than healthy for your child if they are being picked-on or excluded.

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