*****Please note that there are days where I will post more than once. So, to find out all the latest happenings and "goings-on" in our family (or my random thoughts), be sure to scroll down.*****

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

It All Makes Sense Now…

As most of you are aware, Caleb was diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome about a year ago.  Since then, we have had to do lots of reading and researching.  I don’t think we’ll ever be able to fully understand TS; however, I’m thankful for all of the online information. 
We chose to homeschool Caleb before he was ever born, and we now know that GOD made that choice for us because HE knew all of this would happen.  The more we learn about Caleb and TS, the more thankful we are that God placed that in our hearts so many years ago.  I cannot imagine having Caleb in a regular classroom…I just don’t think he’d be able to function to his ability.  This doesn’t mean that our homeschooling has been all fun and games.  I, as a teacher, have had to change my ways of thinking and teaching.  There have been battles in the classroom, and now it’s all starting to make sense.
I want to refer you to this article…TS is More than Tics.  I don’t feel comfortable copying/pasting the article, so I truly  hope that those of you who are closest to us (and have heard me talk/vent about our situation) will read this.  After I read this article, light bulbs just kept going off.  We see SO much of Caleb in that article, and it truly does explain the reason for many of our battles that we’ve faced in our homeschooling. 
For instance, Caleb has always complained about handwriting.  I never quite understood it, and I just thought he was being defiant and aggravating.  Nope…that’s not it at all.  Handwriting is a struggle for him.  He complains that his hands hurt, and it takes him forever just to get it done.  He’s constantly erasing and starting over or just tossing it in the trash.  So, now that we KNOW this is a valid struggle for him, we can make adjustments. 
Does this mean we’ll never require him to do handwriting?  No…however, we WILL reduce the load.  He will continue to work on his cursive handwriting practice, but I’m not going to have him write multiple sentences each day.  As for English & Writing, well, we’ll make modifications there, too.  After all, I’m not concerned about the quality of his handwriting when he writes a paragraph.  I’m concerned with the quality of his thoughts on paper.  Did he follow the assignment?  Did he follow paragraph writing rules?  This can all be evaluated by having him type his assignments rather than get frustrated at having to handwrite them. 
So, once again, it’s time for us to implement modifications and understanding in regards to Caleb and his schooling.  This article was super helpful, and I encourage other parents of TS children to read it (if you haven’t already).  It was truly eye-opening for us.
Thanks for reading…just had to share what was on my heart!


Shelley said...

Sherrie, same thing with handwriting for my youngest and his diagnosis of mild autism complicated by ADD combined type. We do handwriting daily, but I don't base it on how well he can write it, I want him to be able to read it. That's the only reason we do it. Everything else is done on the computer. The best thing you could do for him right now - and do this year round, even when not schooling, is teach him how to type. That will have him go far. The Dr that diagnosed us told us as long as he can type and sign his name - he'll be fine. Grace of the Lord Jesus be with you.

Lin said...

Can I ease your mind a bit and tell you that the handwriting thing is VERY common with boys?? They are more developed in the gross motor skills at that age and the girls are better at the fine motor skills. Don't stress out or attribute it all to TS--he may just be a very normal little boy in that fashion!!!

My son hated writing anything--no patience for his hand to catch up. He's 18 now and in college and his handwriting is STILL awful. He used the computer for almost all of his school projects when he was little.

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