Tuesday, 23 November 2021

10 things I'm trying to teach my autistic teenager

Teenage shoes

There's been a lot of focus on schools and qualifications for teenagers over the last few years - and rightly so.  But being a teenagers can mean learning a lot more than just academics.  Life skills aren't included when you get them help with tutoring for physics and maths online, but for many kids this is the time they need to learn about the life skills they will need to become as independent as possible.  For some it will be learning about budgeting and time keeping for others this might be being able to make a meal or get dressed independently.  

Sunday, 21 November 2021

Song and sign is an open door

Disco ball in purple ballroom

We've watched Strictly Come Dancing properly for the past three years. I watched a few series when it first started years ago but there's so much on TV nowadays and we honestly usually only make time to watch sports live.  That was until two years ago when our autistic and neurotypical family found it help us to connect with each other.  And this years moment came last night with Rose and Giovanni. 

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Adapting to winter clothes

Girl with coat and back pack

Half-term is over, and the darkness is here with the inevitable drop in temperatures.  It's time for the winter wardrobe.

Thursday, 28 October 2021

What I've learned from working in different schools and at different levels

Girl at school

I started teaching in Higher Education when our first son was about a year old.  I was a marketing professional that went back to the agency i worked at part-time - two days a week.  There was a recession at the time and the client base was shrinking so I started to look at other work and came across a college looking for a marketing professional turned teacher.   

Tuesday, 12 October 2021

How anyone can support a parent of SEND kids

Being the parent of children with additional needs can be a rollercoaster ride; ask any parent in this situation. It can be the most unique and rewarding experience of your life while simultaneously being the most exhausting and challenging thing you have ever done.

Thursday, 30 September 2021

How to look at secondary schools for a child with SEND

Boy looking over a wall

When your child has special educational needs (SEN) it feels like there is an even greater weight to getting the right school for them. Many children with SEND can attend regular mainstream primary and secondary schools and have their needs met well there. Both our boys have an ASD diagnosis but only one went to a mainstream primary school.  When it came to his secondary transfer what would I share about looking at secondary schools for him?

Monday, 20 September 2021

Latest travel essentials for our autistic kids as the green list expands

Autistic boy at the beach

The wait is now over and we can book a break to somewhere a bit warmer for half-term.  Obviously there are all the normal things that we think about a a family travelling with autistic kids. Where we are going, what type of accommodation works for us and so on.   But we also seem to be struggling a little with demand and supply at the moment.  Some strange mix of Brexit, lorry driver and gas shortages means we can't always get things at short notice, so what am I thinking about sorting out for the October half-term holiday if we jet off to the Med?

Tuesday, 14 September 2021

My top apps for our autistic kids

Boy in iPad

There's no doubt that all my kids get technology.  Sometimes it can seem like they are glued to their screens but, especially for my autistic son's, they learn a lot from being online and there's a bunch of apps that are really good at engaging them in learning or sensory feedback, which is so important when they struggle with these on a daily basis.  Here's some of my favourites. 

Tuesday, 7 September 2021

Keeping our home safe for our autistic kids

We are hoping that we can do some work to our home soon. We really need to do something about the leaky bathroom and with the boys sleeping so badly need them to have their own rooms. In thinking about how we would adapt our house, I was reminded about all the things we thought about after the boys got their initial diagnoses.  Every thing was seen as a trip hazard when I realised Anthony was falling over so often do to sensory needs and processing difficulties.  And that was just the start... David was totally unaware of danger.  So what did I look at.. and am still keeping in mind now?

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