Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sensory Meltdowns

How are sensory overload meltdowns dealt with/lived through at your house?  Recently, we have had meltdowns dealing with shoes that are too loose, hands that are too sticky and cars that smell "clean".  I can always tell when my son is stressed out about school because these things will happen...he cannot get himself dressed or undressed because his hands are too sticky and he says washing them in the sink will not help.  We just have to work through it until he thinks about something else.  When you are trying to get ready to go somewhere, like a baseball game that he is supposed to play in, it is difficult to get him moving.  Then once the shoes are on, they are too loose and finally when we get in the car, he says it smells clean and he refuses to get in.  We assure him that everything is fine and he finally gets going but it is stressful for all involved.  We get to the baseball field and he refuses to hold his baseball bag because his hands are still sticky.  (When in actuality, they are not sticky, it is just a stress response.)  Upon getting into the game and participating, John seems to enjoy it and has even been hitting the ball more often and fielding more often.

School work has seemed to improve but John's behavior has been going down hill.  Once again, though I do not condone bad behavior, it seems to go hand in hand.  The stress of learning more and growing academically has been coming with difficulty staying out of other people's space.  We have been using Superflex and the Unthinkables http://socialthinking.com/ at home, at school, and at therapy.  The children seem to associate with these characters.  I will say, have you been acting like "rock brain"?  "Rock brain" needs to leave and "Superflex" needs to return.  John will even say sometimes which unthinkable has been appearing at our house or at school.  Hopefully, the flexible thinking will continue into the upcoming summer!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Houston, we have a breakthrough!

Yesterday, we were eating at one of my daughter's favorite restaurants.  It is called Salad Express and has a salad bar, fruit, potatoes, soup, tacos, pasta, and dessert.  R4 as I refer to her on my blog, has been in sensory therapy for about 8 months.  Her therapist wants her to try about 5 new foods a week.  Well, R4 tried five new foods IN ONE DAY yesterday!  I have tried to get her to try grilled chicken many, many times and after many months of eating therapy, she actually ate it and admitted to liking it yesterday!  R4 also tried black olives, cauliflower, pear, and carrot cake. 

Many people believe that our children are just being too picky.  This is not a case of just being too picky.  This is a physical/medical condition that has to be dealt with in a therapists office in order to get help.  I have seen this child go from wearing 4 to five pair of socks at the same time to wearing just one.  I have seen her wear jeans during therapy when she refused before.  Now, I am seeing her try new foods at a rapid rate.  Houston, we have a breakthrough!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

How to be an anti-bully

If you have children kindergarten through high school, then you have probably thought of the issue of bullying. It is still as prevalent as it ever was and now some children are not only being bullied at school but also through the cyber world.

There are some things both parents and schools can do to help their children to avoid being bullied and to help them make better choices. One way is to teach them not to be a bully magnet. The following website has good information http://www.coolcarl.com/page/page/5724599.htm. By not being a bully magnet, your child will avoid the problem altogether. A good thing to remember that keeps coming up in the topic of anti-bullying is to look the person straight in the eye. This is not a trait of a victim but of someone who is confident. Confidence is another strong anti-bullying tactic. Those children who are self-confident will be less likely to be bullied.

A program that many school use is Kelso's Choice. The website http://www.kelsoschoice.com has information and a good program for early elementary aged children. If we instill these principles in our children at an early age, hopefully bullying will not be as big of a problem later in their school years.

Parents who have children with smart phones and internet access should talk to them about proper use of texting and any social media that they use. Advise them that It is not ok to make fun of someone online or send them mean text messages.

If we stay involved in our children's lives and teach them about how to treat others, they are less likely to be bullies or to be bullied themselves.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Summer Time...Time to go camping

Wow!  I cannot believe that school is already going to be out for the summer this week!  Time flies.  If you haven't already done so, it is also time to think about summer camps for the kiddos.  There are so many to pick from that it can be difficult to choose.  There are day camps and overnight camps, there are camps for drama, singing, dancing, sports, art, science, math, and writing just to name a few.  I have one child who would sign up for everything if she could and the other one, he is not quite sure.  There is a girl scout day camp nearby that also accepts boys if the mom volunteers.  So, I am volunteering at this camp next week so that both of my kids can participate.  It will be fun!  Also, my daughter is signed up for at least one drama camp, a writing camp, a mythology camp, and a math camp.  (We told her that if she took math camp, we would let her take the writing one.)  The educational camps are held at a local university and are half a day each.  My son is going to the girl scout camp with us and we will probably sign him up for a space day camp and swimming lessons as well.  School is going to be out, but they will be busier than ever!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Very Special Mind

My son, (let's call him "John"), has a very special mind.  We noticed that he had trouble counting and recognizing letters of the alphabet at about the age of 4.  He has been in tutoring for reading for a couple of years now.  John is now 7.  He has been through kindergarten twice and will be entering first grade in the fall.  The other day, we went to a place called The Snoball Hut.  John looked up at the sign and said, "Mom, they forgot a "W"!  This might not sound like an enlightening moment to some...except, we are having a difficult time getting him to read!  This child does not enjoy reading much, but was able to correct what he thought was a misspelled word.  The other thing that I noticed about John is that he could do simple addition and subtraction before he could count much higher than 10.  Especially if Star Wars characters were involved in the word problems that we made up.  Now if we could only figure out what is going on in his very special mind!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Pediasure

Recently, we have tried to add calories to my daughter's diet.  Yes, she is a picky eater.  A lot of people will say, just make her eat what you cook.  This child has actually lost weight in the past year when she should be gaining for sure.  We have tried Pediasure and it seems to be working.  She is also going to eating therapy (along with Sensory therapy).  Here is the link for the product website:  http://abbottnutrition.com/products/pediasure  There are several flavors including vanilla, banana, strawberry, and chocolate.  Each morning, along with breakfast, Emma drinks her Pediasure and will even remind us if she has not had it that day.  Kroger's has coupons that you can load on to your Kroger card.  They are usually good for $2 off.  Happy eating!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Children With Special Needs

I would like to share an article that I read recently in Newsweek.  It really helps other people understand what a parent with a special needs child feels and goes through.  Here is the link:  http://www.newsweek.com/2011/04/10/the-child-you-didn-t-dream-of.html  Priscilla Gilman does an excellent job of sharing the world of her son Benjamin.   She goes from the sadness at finding out what is going on with her son to the realization that her life is enriched because of his uniqueness.  He adds joy to her life as my children add joy to mine.


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