Tuesday, September 11, 2012

autism in the classroom: questions from max's classmates.

As Max's Official Taxi Service Provider (MOTSP for short), I spend more time than most parents in Max's classroom. Every day at 12:30pm, I pick Max up to take him to therapy. The kids are usually sitting eating their lunches when I arrive. Max knows the schedule, so he is watching the door waiting for me. Last year the kids didn't seem to pay much attention to me - but this year, they are a much more curious bunch. It may be that there is a crop of new kids in Max's grade 1 class who are just getting used to Max and some of the things that are different about him.

One little girl in particular has a question for me everyday. Yesterday she asked "Where does Max go in the afternoon?". When I explained that Max goes to a different place to learn, sort of like a school, she followed up with "What does he learn there?". Fair question. How do I explain Behavioural therapy to a 6 year old? I responded "Well, he works on learning how to talk more, and how to play with friends". Not quite accurate, but I figured she would understand that. Today she asked me "Does Max's sister go to this school? Who is she?". I responded that yes, Max's little sister does go to this school and that she is in JK. I'm interested to see what question she has for me tomorrow.

I mentioned the questions being asked to Max's EA and she said that most of the kids accept Max for Max very quickly. The fact that he has someone in the class to help him, uses a different washroom, and gets to go on walks around the school when he needs a break quickly becomes normal. It's interesting that Max's classmates don't make much of the special treatment he gets. I really can't wait to hear what they have to say when he starts bringing his service dog to school with him in the spring. I think that might be the tipping point!