Thursday, September 29, 2011

Is It Okay to Laugh Now? No? How About Now?

Oh. My. Gosh. I just had the biggest and most totally inappropriate laugh. A copy of the "multidisciplinary team report" and notice of findings from evaluations done on Sky by specialists in the community school system arrived today in advance of our case conference meeting. You'll remember it took exactly three tries to convince them to evaluate him at all (I wrote about this here, here and here), so I have been super curious to see the results of their observations.

They essentially determined what we already knew which is that Sky is borderline Asperger's (supporting his PDD-NOS diagnosis). They also found that he is average to above average academically but that he requires support for social and behavioral issues stemming from his problems with pragmatic language and sensory integration. As such, they agree that he requires special education support. It will be interesting to see what that means in practice. I've been told not to expect much.

But this post is not about that. It's about the good (and totally inappropriate) laugh I had when I read the report.

Part of the report gave detailed descriptions from classroom observations of Sky. The report is brilliantly descriptive and made my love of Sky's teacher increase exponentially. The observing psychologist wrote:

During classroom time, Sky was observed to be very fidgety, and had difficulty remaining in his chair, was loud at times, and was often off task...He tapped or swung his feet back and forth, rocked back and forth in his chair, and, at one point, jumped out of his chair and ran around it while the teacher was instructing the class. He blurted out questions and comments, interrupted others, and made various noises. He played with objects in his desk, sometimes engaging in fantasy play. His fantasy play included various actions and noises including hand movements and rather loud sounds of "explosions" with the "explosions" occurring while the teacher was instructing the class. While Sky was very fidgety, had difficulty remaining in his chair, was noisy at times, and engaged in some obviously inappropriate behaviors, he did participate in the lesson being presented by volunteering to answer questions, and did complete his work as assigned when given a worksheet to complete. His writing was neat and his teacher complimented him on his work.

I know. Right? He totally did a Chinese fire drill in the middle of class. Who doesn't have the urge to do that some time? Seriously, though, his teacher rocks. She has not once expressed exasperation with him and what is clearly disruptive behavior from him. Instead, she constantly reminds and redirects him and keeps the school experience positive enough that he is able to enjoy school, do his school work, and do it well. Later in the report, the observer notes that Sky's fidgeting and noises don't seem to bother the other students. Also pretty amazing, right? Somehow, his teacher and his classmates have learned to accept him for who he is.

My favorite part of the report described how Sky misheard the name of the lead investigator (Mr. Elliott) and thought the teacher called him an idiot. According to the report, he exclaimed, "That's a bad word!" before his teacher explained that it was merely someone's name. I don't remember where Sky picked up the work "idiot" (though I guess it was probably from the summer in Japan when the only English channel we could get was Cartoon Network--Blast you, Cartoon Network!), but ever since he's known the word, he has mispronounced it. Elliott, idiot. Idiot, Elliott. Totally sounds the same to him.

And so, reading the report reminded me of all of the awesome and totally aggravating things about my son. And it reminded that a lot of that which is aggravating is also that which is awesome. Most importantly, though, the report assured me that, for now at least, he's in pretty good hands at school.

Related posts: Accidental Advocate Redux, The Best Offense is a Good Defense

1 comment:

FMBMC said...

I've daydreamed about Chinese firedrilling in class, and occasionally in church (my parents' church, man is their minister boring)! I once kept myself occupied in their church by figuring out how I could escape the sanctuary without touching the floor. Glad to see someone is living out my fantasies!