Social Development classes in Middle School~~

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by wakeupcall, Jan 16, 2007.

  1. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    My difficult child will make the transition into middle school next year (6th). We are about to have another ARD meeting and I don't want to agree to anything I don't know more about and you all know how schools can be......what is a social development classroom? I know they are smaller (good) and more one-on-one (good), but especially in middle school I don't want him to think he's a dummy (actually he just got his report card and made 2 A's and 3 B's) and I need to know how they operate. I'm so confused and I want to do the right things for him....this is so scary! :frown:
  2. OTE

    OTE Active Member

    My Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid was held back to do "5th grade" again this yr. So I'm facing the middle school transition next yr and dreading it.

    Mine is now in what might be called a social skills or social development class for Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids. There is no national std as to what such a class should be. Nor have I ever heard it offered to kids who are not Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). Social skill problems are part of Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). With your child's diagnosis on your signature social skill problems would not be typical. Not that it isn't frequent with ODD kids, just that the "treatment" would be to improve the diagnosis via medicine and psychotherapy. My ODD kid has been in a lot of placements and he's never been in a social skills class. They have group recreation time, talk during activities, all of which is supervised and they're certainly working on social skills during that time but...I'm guessing that your child is in a self-contained BED class. So why social skills? And if you don't have a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) diagnosis, why is school suggesting social skills class?

    My Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid is in a social skills class with, I think, 2 other Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids who are mainstreamed and 3 "normal" kids the same age. I believe there is only one adult in the room and that is the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) "specialist" for the school district. They call it a club to make it look less Special Education. At the beginning they practice meeting someone. So they walk up to someone (acceptable distance), shake hands, say what is your name, wait for answer, repeat name and say nice to meet you name, etc. As they move on they practice various kinds of interactions with peers and adults. So it's structured interactions with scripts that they practice. Yes, very rote. But with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids these are things that they have to learn as intellectual exercises. Things like distance when standing next to someone do not come naturally. They play games to practice turn taking, saying appropriate things when someone loses, etc. That is very different from an ODD kid who naturally knows what to do but refuses to do it.
  3. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    That's interesting, OTE. He's never been diagnosis Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) as such. He LOVES being with people, but his skills are very lacking, thus the idea of putting him in social development classes. I still think his diagnosis is what I want to call "pending", since no one can come up with anything very concrete.
  4. OTE

    OTE Active Member

    Is his thinking Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) or NT?

    I think we've talked about him possibly being Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) before. The "ADD", the "coordination disorder" are all Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). Plus a lot of his other symptoms are possible Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) such as the sleeping problem. The ODD of a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid arises from the differences between Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) and NT thinking and/or some of the other Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) issues such as sensory and transition. BiPolar (BP) and Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) are often co-morbid. Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids don't have the kind of mood swings a BiPolar (BP) kid does. But the two illnesses tend to run in the same genetic lines.
  5. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    I don't understand the differences between Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) and NT thinking. He's had lots of sensory problems in the past, but that part is much better. We HAD made great strides in his sleeping problem. He'd slept in his own bed in his own room since moving into a new house in Oct......till about three weeks ago. Now he sneaks into our room in the middle of the night and sleeps on the floor at the foot of the bed, again. ALL transitions are difficult for him (thus my concern over middle school).
  6. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    School districts within states call the same curriculum by different names so there's no way to know. I'd call and ask for more information -- even a brochure. Get specifics.
  7. OTE

    OTE Active Member

    Add transition problems to the list of Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) indicators. So did the meltdowns over sensory issues go down?

    Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) vs NT thinking... probably at least one college course. It's multi-dimensional and affects every thought. You'll have to read some books about autism. Try Temple Grandin. Start with articles on the internet. Obviously articles will focus on only one aspect of the differences.

    Would be helpful if you could narrow down some of the issues. Then when he's going into a meltdown you can mentally run through the list to see if it's really one of those underlying issues. Addressing the issue with him rather than the topic of the issue can help once they're old enough to understand what you're saying. In other words, my Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid last night was playing video games for awhile. One of his older bros came along and wanted to play with him. But the older bro wanted a different video game. Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kid has a meltdown. So what's the underlying issue? Partially the obsession has been disrupted so he goes into meltdown about that. But there's also the transition problem, he was abruptly removed from the obsession. So I have to go through a discussion about sharing, turn taking, getting a chance later, obsessions, benefits of trying other activities, abrupt disruptions vs notice, etc. Mine isn't mature enough to understand much more than that.

    There's also black and white thinking in Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). Mine is obsessed with rules. Any deviation from rules could cause a meltdown, whether by him or someone else. He's improved tremendously in this area but occasionally... To some extent he still has the idea that people are either good or bad, nothing in between, no movement once they have a label. So if he does something "bad" he often has a meltdown. It's not that he minds the consequence, it's that he now has the bad label. So I have to tell him the consequence after I reassure him that he's not bad, what he did was to violate a rule.

    Re social skills the rule thing is a problem. There are rules at home and rules at school which can be different eg no touching peers. Took awhile when he was young for that to sink in. I had to write down the home rules, even the obvious ones. Last yr he urinated on the playground during recess. If he does that at home he's verbally reminded not to do it. But his bros couldn't care less, they occasionally do it too. On the playground it generated a firestorm of both adult and peer rebuke, laughter, etc. So to an extent, the social skills lessons are giving him the rules of social interaction. Just like the urinating in public, these "rules" are not obvious to him.

    In the last couple of yrs he's been obsessed that fire is bad. To the point that if something is burning on my electric stove (he'd really lose it if I had gas) he's hysterical that it's a fire. Candles are a horror to light in my house. He has to stare at them every moment they're lit even if it's because the electric is out. All the time he's looking at them he's talking about putting them out. So fire is bad, can't ever be acceptable. Is it fear? Maybe there's a component of that but in my humble opinion it's mostly the black and white thinking.

    There's so many aspects, you really have to study it.

    What was his score on the online Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) assessment? Was the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) diagnosis eliminated by a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) specialist? Sorry I don't remember.
  8. wakeupcall

    wakeupcall Well-Known Member

    It never occurred to me to work on "rules" where socializing is an issue. We'll work on that. The Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) assessment suggests "Mild Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)". We have had two WONDERFUL days in a row here at home. Is the difference because husband is off on a business trip? Usually, it's much worse if husband is on a business trip. difficult child is so complex and doesn't follow any diagnosis to the extreme I think he should to be diagnosis'd with anything other than ADHD, but he's obviously something. Oh yea, it'll probably be all figured out after he's grown and we will have little influence......
  9. OTE

    OTE Active Member

    LOL. After we're dead it will all be clear! LOL

    Is there a different level of noise, activity or number of people near difficult child when husband is there vs not? AKA sensory issues? Does husband do a lot of hugging, roughhousing, etc? That's the sensory input that some Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) kids crave, some hate it, some crave it. Mine is always on my lap for hugs. Sleeps pressed up against me. Temple Grandin has a hug machine. For those who crave it, it's calming, as is any sensory input they crave. Mine also loves spinning, swinging form something high, climbing high, and various other of those kinds of sensory inputs. Calms him. Most Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) classes do this kind of sensory input on a schedule during class. Most Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) specific programs have a sensory room with scheduled time in there. It's supposed to also make them more focused, so they learn better.