Tag Archives: summer

Onward and Upward, troops!

Well.  A new school year is finally here.

One of the best summer’s the boy has had; many camps, many friends, doesn’t remember any of their names!  Nothing unusual there.  We have seen a huge blossoming of his social skills and his confidence.  Finding he was good at joining in at camps, good at games, good at gymnastics, good in the homeschooler’s production of “Wizard of Oz” even if he was a flying monkey named Rascal!  Our lad has forged through summer and now, on the penultimate night before his 7th birthday, we can proudly say he is hitting his stride more and more often.  Yay!

Schooling has started and Mr. D. has fallen in love with Math.  We are using Life of Fred – there is a new elementary series – and whilst the work is easy so far, the concepts behind are not.  Second lesson in and, in a round about way, we’re looking at how easy algebra can be.  Except it isn’t called algebra.  It isn’t called anything special at all.  That helps make it easy, methinks.

Science has been a slower start; lots of reading at the beginning and he really, really, really just wants to dissect the sheep’s brain we have for him.  And the heart.  And the eye.  And various other mammal organs.  Unfortunately, I think Daddy has claimed brain dissection as the one (read that right, one) class he is willing to take over.  Bummer.  I was looking forward to that.

On the sensory planet, Mr. D. is trying more textures of food.  Still doesn’t like the ones he didn’t like before but he is willing to concede his tastes may have changed and that he should try – even a morsel – to see if foods like potato, egg, rice, etc. are okay to eat.  Rice is the only winner and then it is only with soy sauce.  With his preference for bitter, Mr. D. has never liked bland food.  Doesn’t like spicy, either, but he does love bitter and salty.  Bring on the reduced sodium, please?

Labels in clothes are still an issue.  I try and cut them out or buy without but Mr. D. will often still be found with his underwear inside out.  To make it worse, this strange summer has played havoc with his skin and his eczema has been more pronounced.  Woe.

Anyway, in between keeping track of our learning via Homeschool Tracker (free software for the basic model), Mr. D. has been raring to go with the extra-curriculars.  Tomorrow is gymnastics.  He will also do swimming, museum science, and for the first time:  guitar lessons.  Lovely lady who is trained not only as a musician but as a music therapist; she gets that Mr. D. isn’t going to be a straight-forward lesson type of guy!

On our first day of schooling, two days ago, I needed 10 or 15 minutes uninterrupted for preparation.  I sent Mr. D. out into the sunny yard to amuse himself.  He made a bow and arrow – it has been an ambition for a while now.  He deliberately didn’t sharpen the point of the arrow because he only wants to knock apples out of our trees, not actually hurt someone, apparently.  We cheered on his resourcefulness.


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So what happens when your ADHD, FASD, SPD 6 year old kid wants to learn ChineseLiveMocha because it is free.  It is actually good because it is split into groups of 40 words/phrases at a time.  Of course, it is not meant for kids Mr.D.’s age but he doesn’t not tackle it alone.

Because he has been steadfast in his love for China, particularly ancient China, we’ve borrowed some resources (he is most taken with the old-style Calligraphy set with the stick of ink and the lovely dragon puppet) and we thought we would round off yesterday by going to a local Chinese buffet.  Not particularly brilliant food but cheap and easy on and for the kids.

We had been going to a local school having a ‘fun fair’ in the early evening but the rain put us off – of course – it cleared up by the time we had decided on Chinese instead.

Big mistake.

We know, and often forget in the rush, that our kids, especially Mr.D., do better when we take five minutes to calm down before leaving and take another five minutes to discuss our expectations of them, their behaviour, and what those expectations might actually look like.

We didn’t do it last night.

I won’t go into everything that happened – makes for a fairly miserable experience – but it was less than idealistically (way less?  oh, yeah).

Today, after Mr.D. rocked and talked a lot in bed last night – always a sign of over-emotionality at some stage of the day – we’ve had an okay day.  Not perfect – there was a lot of defiance at breakfast time – but it has been better.  On top of that, our respite worker is with us all day today and they’ve camped in the backyard, packed up the tent and toys and camped next to Brooklyn Creek, and Mr.D. has gone to his Museum Science last class and potluck, whilst Emma and our carer are helping Daddy put together the last of the playground (fingers and toes crossed).  That has filled in the day nicely.

Now Mummy just has to figure out what activities, when, and how much, for the summer for both kids.  This is strategic, requires multiple calendars, and a lot of caffeine.  Wish me luck!

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