Leveraging the Ecosystem...

As every other parent of a special child, we too leverage the ecosystem of our support, whichever way we can. We have encouraged our DS's grandparents, cousins and my (DD) friends to write to DS via email. Early on, we needed to sit with DS for him to go through his gmail account and prompt him to respond. The framework DW used to teach DS, was that of a train - it has an engine (greetings, how are you, etc), the carriages (body of the mail with content) and caboose (the final byes, etc etc). The train analogy was used, since DS is a vehicle lover.

Now-a-days, no one needs to sit with DS - every saturday, he logs on to his gmail account and starts responding to emails.

Now that he was on auto-pilot on this, we had asked my (DD) dad, 6-8m ago, to ask him some math questions, in a way, that it is not overwhelming to DS; but position it as something my dad learned when he was the same age and had trouble learning it. Thus, a little by little, DS had graduated to solving progression etc. Last week, he had solved, 3, 5, 8, ___, 17, 23 progression !! (Yay!!!)

So we decided, it is time to up it, a bit. So we asked my dad to ask DS another question (#2) apart from the Math Q (#1). The math question would be the routine, but the second question would be some fact-finding. The intent of asking the question is NOT for him to find the answer. But discover the process of finding the answer. To get my dad to understand, here are the samples that we provided my dad with:

Who were the presidents of USA before and after Clinton ? DS will not know - but the knowledge/resolution process could be:
  • DS asks us (or)
  • he asks his teacher at school (or)
  • he googles
  • ... 
How many 100s/centuries Sachin Tendulkar has made in his international cricket career ? DS wont know this; again, his options would be:

  • he can ask me (or)
  • he can google (or)
  • he will figure out just like cars sites (that he loves to go and visit), there are cricket sites too...
So, the intent is, to make him discover the process of learning by himself (functional) rather than finding the answer (skill/knowledge). The belief is, if the process is set, the learning would be a resultant.

The first installment of questions have come through to his mailbox. We'll know how DS handles it soon !


We are seeing some motivation with DS for the past few days, including the time in India during our vacation.

Once he is back from school, post his customary break,  he has been on-task - he and his DM do functional math (currency, percentages etc) and then simulate it by acting a shopping scene. He also has shown a great amount of interest in doing an online reading program ("raz-reading") that his class-teacher has suggested. He seemed to be looking forward to it and ensure that he does that at least once a day. He is also showing quite a bit interest in reading a story books - like a mini-novel - called "The Ravens Mystery Series". So much so, that DW has placed order for a set of such books !! He is also on task for the physical exercise with his Master; and ensures that he voluntarily asks me to join him for 15min of exercise on days when Master doesn't come home for the training...

So, not sure, if he is becoming a bit more aware and self-regulated of what he he needs to do, but this is a welcome change for us. The place where he seems to have shown some regression is ability to be in the group at Teach Social. He seems a bit restless and indulges some minor inappropriate actions - like laughter...

I wonder if it is to do with the change in diet !