Thursday 21 January 2016

Cheery after chess, autism and games

Clubs are a bit hit and miss at school. We've found that after school ones seem to be a bit too much for Anthony. As a boy with ASD, ADHD and hypermobility, the sports ones require too much information processing and a lot of the clubs are sports related. Anthony was until Christmas only enrolled in a lunchtime computer club. 

Last term, all the Year 3 classes started playing chess on a Wednesday afternoon. At first I was a unsure how Anthony would react to chess.  It can seem a bit complicated and requires a lot of focus. However it turned out that rules and systems worked well for him. He totally got chess.  Most of the time he played with his teaching assistants but he started to request it at reward time. So, when the club renewal came round, I enrolled him in the Chess Club. 

He seemed keen and he received a chess set as a present for Christmas. We've had a few games but mostly they have been lessons really as we help Anthony realise what will happen next on the board. He's quite keen on using his queen a lot. He says it's because it's such a strong piece. But then he often looses her early in the game. A few times at home this has ended in tears and I wondered whether Chess Club was going to be a disaster. Mostly I was keen to ensure that he had lost a few times with me so I could see his reaction.  This way I could help him cope with loosing.  

When the day came. Anthony's teaching assistant took him to the club at lunchtime and left after a few minutes. When I collected him from school, she grabbed me before Anthony came to the door to tell me that he'd lost both his games.

My heart sank and I was prepared for the worst, but I needn't have been. He was almost pleased about it. "I'm getting lots of experience of chess and I'm seeing what others do to win." he said. 

My son may not be the king of the Chess Club but he's no pawn either.

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  1. Ah, that's lovely. Hopefully it'll be something he enjoys and is good at.

  2. I love that you have found something he loves. Chess never even crossed my mind, one to add to the future try list ;0) I'm so glad the loosing went so well. So many life lessons taking place in that chess club.

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements :0)


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