Cruel joke.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Shari, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Got Wee to school today just after lunch (dr appointment this am). While waiting for the afternoon aid to arrive, I stayed with him. He was handed a paper from the teacher that said he gets to be "star of the week" next week.

    This is a coveted position. He gets to lead the group in the morning routine, change the calendar, bring in things about himself, etc. Generally, kids love it.

    He instantly started to fight back tears. While the rest of his class went on to art, he and I stayed in the classroom. He can't count money very good, and part of the morning routine is to make the date in change (ex. make 24 using 2 dimes and 4 pennies, etc). He can't read, part of the routine is to use a pointer to lead the class in the morning song and poem. One day, they get to bring in their favorite book and read it to the class. He was a mess, crying.

    AFter I got him calmed, his afternoon para showed up. He asked me to take him to art, so I did. We got to art, and he sat on the floor for the remainder of the instruction. The assignment was to draw a picture of a face using fruits and vegetables for features. Then the teacher pointed to the board. 4x15ft of black board covered with a list of fruits and vegetables that could be used. And Wee couldn't read it. And again came the tears. Of course, no one else knew why he was upset...

    And not for nothing, even if they don't try to put him on homebound or in another district or something, he hasn't made a full week of school (or even close) in 3 months...apparently I just don't get it.

    I talked to SpEd Director today and she made the comment that he doesn't seem to have predictable triggers and his outbursts are random. I told her about today, and explained how it would appear random if you just walked into art, but if someone was with him throughout the day....they would have quickly known it wasn't...
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2010
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    As I said on your other post (or meant to say, if I didn't) - it is NEVER random, there is always a good reason. it's just that we don't always have those reasons right out where it's obvious.

    Just because it's not immediately obvious, doesn't mean it's not logical and even predictable, if you know the child well enough.

    Frankly, my response to the comment of, "his outbursts are random," would be to say, "You just made it abundantly clear that you are not even trying to think about what could have set him off. There is ALWAYS a reason that makes sense to him. NEVER forget that!"

    WHO doesn't get it?

    Oh, I get so angry sometimes...

    It reminds me of the time that difficult child 3's school counsellor said to me, "Isn't it wonderful to see he's no longer autistic?"

  3. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    He's been bothering me about what he wants for his birthday. Today was no exception.

    Before he was all pulled back together, he begged me to be at school with him like last year, so I could help him. And then he just sobbed and said "you don't have to get me anything for my birthday, mom, if you'll just teach me how to read"... God those comments break my heart. I hate even sending him.

    I don't know if the advocate is lacking that much backbone, or what, but no way will I let him go homebound without kicking and screaming, at least. I'm mad. I think I will still be mad by Monday. I don't know how to make them get it or how to make them step up to their plate, but I'm dang sure gonna point out what they haven't tried and where they haven't followed what we've laid out.

    Best I can.

    Cured of autism. funny. They told me that with Wee some time ago. That 10% of all autism cases resolve themselves on their own. Oh yeah???
  4. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Oh my goodness, Shari, that just breaks my heart. :crying:

    I know you're angry and you have *every* right to be. Wee tries so hard and this is so unfair to him.

    I know you want to hold the school accountable. We all do. But, I have to ask at what point is it hurting him more?

    I pulled difficult child from school a couple of times over the years to homeschool (via online charter school) and I really, really wish she hadn't gone back to regular school this year. Not in this district.
  5. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    At this point, I think it is for sure not doing any good, and I think almost everything is a reminder to him of his "failure". I am reading Love and Logic for Special Needs, which is much like collaborative problem solving and Ross Greene's way in Lost at School, and I just want to buy them all a copy and say "LEARN IT, COVER TO COVER". They'll read it, they'll even write some into his IEP...but actually following it hasn't happened much so far. I am afraid if I pull him, they will have easier justification for "other" placements.

    Tho he could get sick about, oh, tomorrow.
  6. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    I don't see how it can give them future justification if it's the parent's decision to pull her child from the school. They don't need a reason other than, "I've decided to homeschool."

    And as far as justification, I don't care if difficult child accomplishes a single thing at school until the IEP meeting Monday. They could use that against me. The school is concerned about a body in a seat and they're getting that. My focus is to get her to school so that *that* part of her anxiety is being worked on. The education can come later. Especially since she has no supports at school at this time. Or ever. The only problem is that difficult child cares - a great deal - about what she's not accomplishing and feels like she's not learning, and also feels like a failure. I'm just trying to get her through this crisis. My focus is different. It makes me very unpopular at the school. Always has.

    PCA and I are going to spend spring and summer working on alternative education opportunities for difficult child. Because what we're doing isn't working.

    The thing I worry about is that this is going to create an environment like it did for my daughter where school itself is a huge trigger. Had we been able to get the supports we needed when this all started in the 2nd grade, I don't think school would be as huge of a trigger for her. School is the *only* thing that causes her to become this unstable.
  7. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Reading this just broke my heart. Wee tries so hard and there are triggers; I can't believe they don't see this. Your school makes me so angry. I feel like they are so far behind the times and poor Wee is suffering because of it. As for just wanting to learn to read; that part had me wiping away tears. I don't thing my difficult child would go that far (as to not want anything else-lol) but he does want to learn to read badly and to do well at school. He wrote a hear wrenching hw assignment last night about how well he wants to do (I may post later in a separate thread). Many, many hugs to you and to Wee.
  8. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Shari, you need an advocate. Have they provided you with a list of FREE Legal Advocates yet? They are required to by law.
  9. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    No list of free advocates. Who should provide this?

    We have the Protection and Advocacy advocate, but...
  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Aaargh. It is SO not RANDOM!!!!
    Why don't they know what to look for?
    Would another mtng help?
    I feel for you both.
  11. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    The school should be providing a list of FREE Legal Advocate support. My list came in every communication back from the school regarding special education.
  12. aeroeng

    aeroeng Mom of Three

    I am an adult dyslexic. (Someone of normal intelligence that has a difficult time learning to read and write in a traditional environment). In elementary school I could not read or spell even the most simplest of words. Things like "is", "at" or "the". My third grade teacher told my mother that I was probably retarded and would be lucky if I ever made it to a third grade level or knowledge in my entire life. Well I have a BS in aerospace engineering and masters in Technology Management. I think I proved her wrong.

    The good news is that there are several programs that help us dyslexics. The frustrating part is that most schools do not use them. They can be expensive and are extremely difficult requiring work every day. The International Dyslexia Association (IDA)( maintains a list of effective programs. I am frustrated that the techniques to train dyslexics to read have been around for about 60 years, yet the schools have not caught on yet. A national shame.

    [FONT=&quot]I still have nightmares about spelling bees. Everyone else would get very difficult words, I would be asked to spell "ball". I would spell it incorrectly in front of the class, which would break out in a roar of laughter. But I am proof there is hope. PM me for more detailed information, I would be glad to send it.[/FONT]
  13. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Shari! This reading thing is wicked for him to get over - it will invade everything he tries to do.

    Has he been tested for various learning disabilities?

    I went to a seminar for a program called Lindamood-Bell a couple of years ago. It was tremendously interesting. Keep in mind that I have 3 aspies, and each manifests in their own way. They explained that a vast amount of our reading is basically anticipating what the next few words are going to be. From childhood on, we learn words and "make a snapshot" of the word and file it in our brain. As we get more adept at reading, we start to figure out what the next word will be in a sentence or paragraph.

    Some kids never form the picture. Plain and simple.

    Well, I was talking to my sister and mentioned it to her and her brother-in-law was talking about how hard it is for him to sit down and read something. He asked her if she just knows how to spell or if she sees the word in her mind before she spells it out loud. THAT'S the snapshot.

    Could it be that Wee isn't seeing the picture? Take a look at the website:

    You may be able to have the school district pay to have him tested.

    My heart is aching for the two of you!

  14. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I agree with Marg, it's never random. Trouble is most adults are too lazy to take the 10 minutes needed to think beyond the surface of a situation to understand what's going on. That's why we have snap judgements and stereotypes.

    Poor Wee... :( Those boneheads just don't get it, do they?
  15. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Gcv, that's exatly what's gong on with him. We had him tested and they are recommending that program with him. The results of his various testing, its actually fairly amazing the kid is even verbal.

    This is another thing I'll be pushing on Monday. THey've had the draft report for a month, but they got the final on Tuesday...there's plenty more suggestions in there they can implement before they just pass him off.
  16. aeroeng

    aeroeng Mom of Three


    Yes Lindamood-Bell is one of the approved techniques frequently used to train dyslexics. Research has demonstrated the most effective programs are structured phonics programs that use multiple sensory technique. (Because we don't all learn the same way). There are several more.

    Dr. Samuel Orton developed a theory, he worked with a very talented teacher, Ann Gillinham and developed the Orton-Gillingham approach. This was the first structured phonemic reading program, and is the reason I can read today. Since them several different programs have been developed that use the same approach. Lindamood is one. Wilson is another popular one for older kids and adults. But the best thing to do is to contact the IDA for the complete list so you can find out what is available in your area.
  17. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    Right now, they are using Wilson with him. He has made progress, but its insanely slow, and since they've thrown him out so much, its hard to say if its slow because Wilson isn't working (as the Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) said it likely won't for him), or because he's just exposed to it 40% less than he should be...

    We will be discussing this on Monday, for sure.
  18. aeroeng

    aeroeng Mom of Three

    Yes all of the good structured phonemic programs require a tremendous amount of effort. On the part of the student, therapist and parent. My Orton Gillingham training was by far the most difficult thing I have ever done, and I have two advanced degrees. Putting a kid through this is like making them get a PHD at a young age. But it is the only way we dyslexic learn to read.

    Wilson is not my favorite, but it is very popular and on the approved list. I feel it cuts too many corners, but many are happy with it. In all of these programs the child must develop new skills, in areas that do not come naturally for them. You would never expect a child to learn to play the piano without practicing every day. If a piano student only worked when the teacher met with them once a week they simply would not improve quickly. It is the same way with structured phonemic programs. The "structured" part means they have broken reading down into small single skills the child needs to learn. And, then teach them one at a time in an organized fashion. He needs to work with it every day for about 3 years for it to work properly.

    So yes, if he is missing 40% of the instruction time it will hold him back. When I discovered that my kids were inheriting my reading issues, first I cried. Then I found an academic therapist. He charged $40 an hour (today's rate is closer to $60) and the child really needed to work with him for at least one hour every day. I asked the academic therapist to teach me so I could reduce that to once a week with myself as the instructor for the rest of the week. (This is very hard to do as kids don't like working for their parent). He agreed and that is what we did. You might consider taking some Wilson training yourself that way he can continue practicing at home. (This is an overwhelmingly difficult thing to do, but you are not required to have teaching credentials to learn it).

    Now having dealt with both dyslexic kids and a difficult child, I can honestly say that I would pick the dyslectic kid over the difficult child any day. For dyslexia there is a structured program that works (many of them). For difficult child you are out on your own were even the professionals don't seem to get it. You have both, a tremendous challenge. Good luck, feel free to MP me and we can swap e-mail addresses.