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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A measure of Martini for Art, Health and Physical Education.

I missed a day’s blog recording of Boy’s home school diary. Yesterday was a horror day for me in juggling the many needs of a part time social worker, full time Mum and home schooler. By the time I went to bed last night I swear I looked like the Mummy from Boy’s movie watching efforts over the weekend!!!

Spelling: Boy had an appointment at the Pediatrician’s yesterday. We managed to do our spelling list before we went to the Doctor’s and Boy did very poorly (pictured). He was highly anxious about going to the pediatricians and wanted to know was it the nice Doctor or the cranky one. I began to panic thinking that Boy would melt down on what was a VERY busy day for me. Interesting how the stress of change becomes overwhelming for Boy. There’s no stress today and when we redid spelling this morning he got 75% correct.

Health, Art and Physical Education: The day only improved yesterday. No meltdowns. Boy and the Pediatrician got along fine. They had jokes with each other and the Doctor always lets me know that I worry far too much about my Boy (Boy shaved a part of the side of his head and I was concerned about it).

Boy took his art set with him to the appointment because he was supposed to use our waiting time to make an Egyptian themed poster instead of doing a movie review about The Mummy. That wonderful Doctor spent time admiring Boy’s set and asked many educative questions about colours, blends, styles, chalks, etc. He then asked Boy if he would be willing to do a picture to hang on the Doctor’s wall. Boy jumped at the opportunity and was thrilled to be asked.

Boy produced a full page picture of ……a Martini glass half full of drink (pictured). This puzzled me. We are not big drinkers and I only ever drink champagne. Where Boy got his inspiration from perplexed me. Last night, when having a chat about the busy day, Boy said he saw a postcard on the Doctor’s wall. It was of a person on holiday holding a big Martini glass. The Doctor was talking to Boy about how great holidays are and the things they like when they are able to relax. Boy figured the Doctor must like Martinis.

The Pediatrician and I agreed that Boy’s anxiety and insomnia have become too intrusive. He is at the stage of almost non functioning because he is too tired and anxious. Although I have not wanted to go the medication route, I also appreciate the benefit of medication assisting. So, Boy now has a daily pill to help calm him and to help re-establish a sleep pattern. Boy and I went through the information sheet and discussed side effects of medication, abuse of medication and why medication can be helpful or unhelpful. It was a great discussion and an even better learning experience.

Math: Although we are following tenets of natural learning, I saw a math and English program that I was interested in. We tried it out yesterday and Boy did very, very well. He scored in the top 10%. The program from Kinetic is computer based and just brilliant in its telephone support and additional help. We have bought the program and Boy and stepfather are going to do Math that way as well as their natural ways of learning together. Boy’s first paper based assessment is pictured.

I teach part-time in Social Work at University (college). Lectures for the year begin today. Because I have to be away from home, stepfather and Boy have changed their math day Fridays to Wednesdays. This means that Boy doesn’t have to go to anyone else. He can stay in the familiarity of his own home.

And now I must away….my class awaits me.


Diane Dennis said...

I often read your posts although I've never commented.

For some reason the picture of the martini that your son drew caught my attention.

Not because of the martini or the colors or anything like that but rather, it's interesting that he used "negative" space.

I don't know why it strikes me as interesting but it does...

Maybe a budding artist... :)

I have an Asperger's site here at because our son has Asperger's.

Thank you for posting about your experiences.

Have a good day/night!

Megan Bayliss said...

Hi Diane
thanks for commenting. I love to know who's reading and whether they have a life like ours: some days hell other days perfect.
I visited your web site. What an excellent idea. I would love to submit an article for you to link to if that's okay.

Yes, I'm not sure what it is with this pic either. I think perhaps that it's a Martini glass drawn by a kid who wouldn't know what a Martini was if it was put in front of him. The mash of immature colouring suggests that someone has been affected by the other half of the Martini content!!

He like's art and we encourage him to pursue it.

You take care and drop me a comment sometimes.

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

Hi, Megan--

I have been very busy in the past week and haven't had time to do anything much but lurk!

My N. takes medication to ward off anxiety and to improve focus and eye-contact. Our "Aspies" have some different brain chemistry and so the medications do help.
I worried, but the more I learn about how the brain works, the less I worry--although I do have pediatrician who uses a sub-clinical dose of one medication and the smallest effective doses of the others.

I had the same comment about Boy's art as Diane had. I saw the use of negative space and was amazed. My daughter took a drawing class at university and said it was quite a difficult concept for many students.

Aren't our "quirky" kids so interesting?

Megan Bayliss said...

Hi E
I wondered where you were this week. I kept popping into Ragamuffin Studies to see if you'd posted again. Glad to know you're okay, just busy (oh do I know about that!!).
I hope Boy manages to keep up his excellent art. His next sister up is AMAZING with her drawing. I have no idea where they get the talent from. I can't even draw a straight line!!!!

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