Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Torin @ 6-and-2-thirds

Torin is 6 years and 8 months today. So here's a personality "snapshot" of him at this stage.

School: Torin has started at a state primary school in grade prep after quite a few too many bloody hiccups.
He commenced kindergarten in 2006. Got through that year without a hitch. He *was* enrolled at the school nearest his kindergarten but then there was apparently a boo-boo made on his application for funding for an aide (as he has autism). So his teacher-to-be essentially told me I could either keep him home or drag my baby daughter along and spend the day at school with him.
Now I have no problem doing what I can to help my child. But she didn't just cross the line there. She leapt over it. End result was I panicked and home-schooled for term one in 2007.
Now you hear stories about how home-schooling is great for autistic children because they can learn at their own pace and the environment doesn't upset them and all that jazz. Except you don't seem to hear about how HARD it is for the parent. I felt out of my depth and in Term 2, enrolled him in prep at the local Steiner School. THAT was the best thing I ever did. His teacher "J" was new to teaching and was amazing. She went above and beyond my expectations.
But this year, he went into a bigger combined class, had a different teacher and I don't think things were helped by the surprise premature arrival of Edan and he didn't cope very well. So midway through the year I decided to find him a state primary school so he was eligible for funding for an aide (which he sorely needs) and we found his current school. I also made the decision to put him back into prep as, academically, I felt that was best.
All he needed to know was there is computers there and he was rapt!

Health: As usual, he's as fit as a Mallee bull. Still needs very little sleep.

Developmental: He's still pretty delayed with his speech. I often feel he understand more than he lets me know. Is very good at finding loopholes in rules as he finds it hard to actually break rules. Emotionally he still reacts in a way I can only describe as toddler-esque. We still get tantrums sometimes and his auto-response to any direction is "NO".
His new emotion is "angry". Rather than saying "no", I now seem to get "I angry you Mum" or "I so angry Mum" or "Don't you angry me".

Likes: LOVES his Nintendo DS. Favourite games are Sonic, Super Mario Brothers and Yoshi's Island. Is quite obsessed with Super Mario and all his school work comes home completed and then he has filled the back of the page with drawings of Mario, including full "scenes" from the game.
Wants to eat Rice Cakes with Peanut (Free Nut) butter all day long.

Dislikes: Getting in the bath and later, getting out of the bath.

And while I sit here and look at what I have written it seems quite negative, but I do remember he was NOT talking AT ALL this time 4 years ago. And 3 years ago it was pointing and a single word. So he really has come far.

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