There is so much to process, think about and adjust to. It really is crazy times!
H thrives off routine, structure and the familiar and suddenly a lot of these things were removed. We normally do countdowns, social stories and lots of preparations before a change in his routine but this situation evolved too quickly for us to keep up.
When school closed it was an emotional few days for lots of reasons. One of the hardest things was saying ‘goodbye’ to the special team that support H at school. He told one of his TAs he was going to ‘miss her so much’ and this was a small indication he had some idea of what was happening. This year had been going so well, with happiness and progress in equal measures and it felt brutal to have it taken away.
So we are homeschooling for now along with most of the nation…..
H normally shouts to go out by 9am but has been amazing at this new normal and has stayed in our house/garden for 7 days. I know we can go out for daily exercise but he’s a bit all or nothing so we wanted to set a staying in precedent.
Observing H this week has been interesting and if you look closely he’s coming up with some brilliant coping strategies of his own which mainly involve going back to the familiar. Here are some of the ways he has been coping……
- Stories such as bear hunt and gingerbread man have been revisited and acted out daily.
- Puzzles. He’s been doing the same 5/6 puzzles 3x a day every day! I think that’s because it gives him a sense of achievement, predictability and fun. We were grateful for nanna sending new ones half way through the week!
- Swinging. We are blessed to have a big garden with 2 swings. H has always loved swings at the park but rarely used the ones in our garden. We even considered giving them away! This week the sensory need of swinging has regulated him and been his ‘go to’ at least 10x a day. He’s even learnt to swing himself which is great news for me!
- Colouring. H has been colouring every day and watching tutorials on YouTube. His particular favourites are ‘In the Night Garden’ and ‘Baby Shark’ pictures but he’s sitting down and enjoying the rhythm of it. The colours he uses do have to be an exact match to the original so here’s hoping the pens last!
After a week of homeschooling a child with SEN and caring for 3 young ones it has not led me to have much advice but I hope to have more over the coming days!
H only sits for about 10 mins at home at any one time so any ‘learning activity’ has to be brief and targeted. We are going at our own pace and adjusting to a new normal.
Something we do know
This isn’t easy for anyone and there is lots that is scary and unknown. As H gravitates towards the familiar and known I feel that’s good advice for all of us.
Even this hard and unprecedented situation is not without hope as there is a known God we can run to when things feel so out of control.
Each day at breakfast we are sharing things to be thankful for to remember we have so much compared to so many.
As we find a new rhythm I hope to share some of our journey with you. I would also love to hear how you are getting on!