Autism Transitions This blog is more or less a follow-up to my last blog. I had alluded to transitions that relate to my son’s age—fifteen. My son recently transitioned to getting himself to school on his own (mostly) without help from Mom (he’s been on time since this transition, including making his own breakfast). We are also working on other transitions with our fifteen-year-old. What transitions? The first one was just a recent conversation, but a significant one. We discussed spending money on gifts for others—his own … [Read more...]

Autism and Turning the Page on Little Boy Stuff   My son has grown out of a lot of his “little boy” stuff quite naturally. He simply stopped playing with toy cars, airplanes, and even Transformers when things like devices and computer games became more interesting. This transition happened pretty much on schedule. Did he give it all up? Well, two things were still looming as things that needed to be “retired.” The first one was his bed—a race car bed. We got this bed when our son was about three. We got it used, but in like-new … [Read more...]

A Student with Autism and a Behavior Chart My son is in ninth grade, which means high school. And, he’s had some bumps in the road during this all-important transition. What are some of the issues? *First of all, my son is going without an aide for the full school day. He has never been aide-less before in school. He wanted to go to high school without an aide, and we’re supporting his wishes. *He has been late to a few classes. *He has also been caught playing games on his phone. *He has forgotten to turn in homework. And, he has mixed … [Read more...]

Autism and Sudden House Changes   Recently, we discovered some unexplained water on our kitchen tile. We eventually called our insurance company so they could come out and take a look. It turned out to be a slow but significant leak in our kitchen area. And, it not only involved water, we had mold as well. What happened? Well, our insurance company opened a case and assigned a company to come out and expose any and all water leaks and mold. First, they set up a “containment area.” This had to be done because exposed mold is a health … [Read more...]

Autism and a Middle School Assessment My child is about to finish his first year in middle school. Here is a recap: What did we do to prep the transition? We got to know the campus. Whenever we got a chance, we stopped off at the school and walked around. Even on Sundays. My son took a summer class there to review sixth grade English. More so than reviewing English, I thought four weeks of attending the class would help him adjust to the new campus. It helped a lot. Finally, on the day we picked up his books and schedule, we mapped out the … [Read more...]

Transitioning to a New Autism Aide - Part One   My son finished fifth grade with a new aide. The new aide began in March and was with my son until the end of the school year. During fifth grade, the teacher, RSP person, and the principal all agreed that he had made tremendous progress and that he was “ready" to go without an aide. How long was the original aide with my son? My sonʼs original school aide had been with him for almost six years. She got assigned to him at the end of kindergarten and the district just kept assigning her. … [Read more...]

Losing the Long Time Autistic Aide My son has been with his school aide since kindergarten. He’s now in fifth grade. He has had his school aide for well over five years. That’s consistency. Why is consistency so important? When you find a good aide the goal is to keep that aide for as long as possible. What are you looking for in an aide? You like the aide personally, he/she seems to connect with your child, the aide understands what the parents want for their child, and the aide seems to have some knowledge of behaviors of autistic … [Read more...]