Update: The last two years

26 05 2013

I just realized it’s been two years since I’ve written anything much on this blog… if anybody is still watching– I’m sorry.

When the nightmare that was 4th grade (see that post) finally settled down and J started getting a real education– I felt like I couldn’t let up… like I just couldn’t turn away for a minute. Maybe because I still don’t trust that this school district won’t try to move him into an MD class– or maybe because J needed to prove their repeated insistence that he “couldn’t learn past 2nd grade” so very wrong. Maybe just because it still makes me angry… but, the good news is that he really got taught the academic content standards in both 5th and 6th grades!!

He is getting good grades, learning to talk to girls (J’s personal goal for speech therapy), getting ready to join the swim team in the fall and getting scuba certified this summer– in addition to frontloading social studies (mostly ancient civilizations) and making a documentary about the water quality in NE Ohio.

I don’t know if it’s the sensory deprivation under water or what but, he loves swimming! He’s already done the PADI Discover Scuba class twice and did really well… He researched Cousteau, and Disney Oceans is still in his top 10 (although the animated movie du jour is Monsters Inc.) Maybe I’ll write another post on scuba and autism… but, I make no promises!

J makes movies all the time (last summer’s Humboldt Penguins Documentary was really cool!)– and power points that do things I didn’t know that program can do!– I loves this stuff– and, he’s really good at it. He loves science and wants to learn about ancient civilizations– so, we’ll do MOMA’s Egyptian wing, read some books, watch some movies and do some projects.

We’ve always supported J’s interests, made lots of museum visits and worked to expose him to interesting subjects and places… but over the last two years we’ve been much more focused on helping him create files to put new materials in– giving him a foundation for learning the general education curriculum. Maybe I’ll write more on “frontloading” another day… again, no promises!

It’s going to be a busy– and fun summer! We’ll get to play in water, read good books, go to some neat places… he’ll get to see a ship wreck in lake Erie, enjoy a silent world that doesn’t drive him crazy and we’ll find some time to spend with friends.

Before the accusations that I am a “Tiger Mom” start flying let me tell you– He LOVES this stuff! We firmly believe Temple Grandin’s edict that “we must keep them engaged.” And, we believe in IDEA’s mission statement– everything we do needs to prepare him for “further education, employment and independent living” so, we’re off and running Monday morning.