Lurker with an intro

Avatar for onegirltwoboys
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Lurker with an intro
1
Thu, 07-24-2003 - 8:32pm
I lurk on and off - when I have time.

I have a 9 yo ds that was diagnosed w/ asperger's this past year. I also have a 7 yo ds and a 3 yo dd that appear to not have AS. I homeschool my aspie and it works really well for us. He really struggled in public school w/ bullying and taunts. Now at home - if someone on the street bugs him, he can walk away instead of being forced to stay in the situation. it's done wonders for his self confidence. I am hoping to get him more involved socially this year and see how that works. Luckily most of the times w/ homeschooling - the socialization is #1 more controlled (lots of parents around) and #2 a varied age group so he gets more skills and #3 a lot more accepting than formal school kids. They have to be b/c it's harder to find only 4th graders to play w/ (if one might be a 4th grader) - and the kids are ranging from K-12th.

I have a couple questions though. My aspie is very uncoordinated and not athletically inclined at all (big surprise). He hasn't been in sports but a couple times - soccer when he was 6 and then karate for a year. He hasn't done anything since he was about 7.5 or so. His 7 yo plays basketball. Now 9 yo ds wants to start soccer again in the fall (his brother will be also) and then basketball in the winter (same as 7 yo brother). I worry b/c I don't want him to feel inferior, be made fun of, etc so I'm hesitant to let him do these things. Yet I also know that I can't protect him forever and the activities might be good for him for social reasons as well as physical ones. (getting exercise) We will have the kids in sports thru the local YMCA so I know they are more accepting of kids that aren't as skilled (compared to the highly competive city league we have!) or have kids w/ lots of differences. I just worry he'll still be disappointed that he's different or not as good. He's an extremely bright boy and knows he's different and not accepted much - but doesn't understand WHY he's different and not accepted. He's accepting of everyone (especially if they listen to him go on and on and on and on about his current interest! lol). SO - how can I #1 prepare my son for the sports and also #2 deal w/ any fallout that might occur?

The next thing is dealing w/ fine motor skills. He really struggles in this area. So for homeschooling I am planning to have him learn sign language (it's good anyway b/c my step dad is deaf), do origami (he loves this) and play w/ modeling clay and also continue piano lessons. I think these 4 things can really help him in the fine motor skill area. Since we don't have OT or PT or anything, I don't have that to fall back on and don't have anyone to ask. Is there anything else I can do w/ him at home to improve his fine motor skills?

Also, my 3 yo dd will be working on a preschool curriculum this year and focuses on 4 areas - calendar, movement, fine motor, and nursery rhymes. The movement deals w/ gross motor. I'm thinking it might be helpful if I get my ds involved in the movement and then fine motor section as well. It will encourage his sister and be fun for her to have him participate but I'm thinking it might help to go back to some basics (like hopping, galloping, skipping, jumping, hopscotch, playing catch, balancing for gross motor; playdoh, cutting, tracing, forming shapes and numbers for the fine motor or "pre writing" skills). I'm thinking of making him like her "helper" so he doesnt' end up feeling like a 3 yo himself and having to relearn these things. But maybe as his helper and he does some of these basic skills again, it might reinforce skills he didn't get a lot of time on in the beginning? Does that sound crazy?

Thanks for this wonderful board! I'll pop in from time to time!

Melanie

Avatar for maresgood
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Sat, 07-26-2003 - 12:23am
Hi, I have a 10 yr. old dd (AS&ADD)who was diag. last yr. She has had fine motor difficulties for yrs. She has trouble writing but it has gotten better, she still doesn't tie her shoes well, she seldom draws or does artwork because it looks like a 5 yr. old would do. I wish that in K-3 I would have gotten OT help because that was what she needed. I didn't realize then what was going on with her as far as AS. I think your ideas would help. I would do some research & check out what other activities would work for him. As far as sports goes, I have read where swimming is not usually affected by the AS motor skill problem. My dd has trouble with running & dancing. She didn't like soccer but she did OK @ softball. She had a good spring in softball this yr but she didn't really make an effort to be friends with her team-mates. She sat on the bench alone most of the time! She also enjoyed karate since it is a loner sport. She did karate for 2 yrs. & I should have continued with it. I try to steer away from the competitive teams and go with rec teams or YMCA teams where the kids just want to play & have fun! Good luck with your son & keep posting~ MaryAnn