It's been a rough week for Jacob at school. His behaviour has been off since he was sick a few weeks ago. The time away plus the March break almost totally derailed his desire to attend school. So it's been an interesting few weeks. This week Jacob has earned:
3 OUT OF 8 STICKERS
The picture isn't how Jacob looks when he goes to school, it's just that sometimes that's how he feels. This week Jacob was below the 50% mark for the first time in I don't know how long. It could be related to a number of outside factors including;
1) My work season has started up and I had to work on Tuesday and Wednesday.
2) I'm not there to keep Jacob on schedule during his before school routine when I'm working.
3) Only mom has been taking Jacob too and picking him up from school, which is different to him.
Since I've been working, (and yes, 2 days a week is working) Jacob's been taking direction solely from mom. Not that Shannon isn't great with helping Jacob and keeping him focused, it's just that mom isn't as strict as I am. Then when you consider that I have the winter months off and I usually take Jacob to school everyday. So when I'm not there to say goodbye in the mornings, you can see the potential for a rocky road.
It's vital for a child that has Asperger's to have a good routine. And I have a rock solid routine when it comes to Jacob's school day. Over the years, I've developed a system that allows Jacob to have a structured, yet relaxed schedule, which is beneficial when you have a child with Asperger's. He might not say it, but I know Jacob enjoys the order of a daily routine, because chaos only creates chaos. And when things are chaotic, Jacob is more likely to have outbursts and meltdowns.
While I'm a little more strict, Shannon is the total opposite. She allows Jacob to progress at his own pace, which is great sometimes, but it's not great when trying to get Jacob to school on time. I usually call Jacob upstairs to begin getting dressed at 8:10, so at 8:00, I'll ask Jacob if he's done eating. And if he's not, I'll tell him that he only has a few minutes left to finish up. Shannon will let him eat at his own pace without any redirection. I understand why she does it, she wants Jacob to eat breakfast, which is very important. but it can put his whole day off.
There are however a few things that can occur which will completely ruin Jacob's day. The worst thing that can happen is if the school bell rings before we're in the playground. Jacob hates to be late so he needs a rigid schedule. Because if he's late, he's likely to have a bad day at school. Shannon tries to follow the routine, but it can be difficult. I think it's because Jacob and I are so alike that I can apply it a bit more effectvely.
I know Jacob benefits from the routine, but everyone needs downtime, even if we're still going through the weekly grind. Jacob also enjoys when mom is in charge, because it's like he can take a deep breath and flow through his routine more fluidly. If only we could get him to take a deep breath before he has a meltdown. Oh well, at least we have a 4 day weekend, so well just put this week behind us and start fresh on Tuesday.
WELCOME TO JIM'S AUTISM BLOG
Hi everyone and thanks for visiting our blog. My wife and I created this blog to chronicle our experience while raising a son with Asperger's syndrome. Since our son was diagnosed with an ASD at age 5, we've had a lot of questions. Lucky for us we have a great support network in place. And our blog gives us an opportunity to share what we've learned with our readers. We hope you find our blog informative and interesting. Thanks again for visiting.
"It seems that for success in science and art, a dash of autism is essential." Dr Hans Asperger 1906-1980