Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Latest on Sean

Oh, Sean, Sean, Sean. You know, the first week of Kindergarten Sean seemed to be having such a bad time that I felt really sorry for him. Ached for him, in fact. This week, I realize, I really should feel sorry for his teacher, and I do. She is such a sweet and gentle young lady. I'm sure that she is used to kids who are smart, rambunctious, shy, not shy, who color outside the lines, who need extra help and who shove glue sticks up their noses. I wonder if she's ever taught a kid who gazes down haughtily from a lofty intellectual perch and occasionally graces the common folk with his presence. Such children think themselves above the resultant indignities of things like circle time, story time, the coloring of bears, and being forced to wash one's hands when certainly they are not dirty. These children cannot be expected to wear pants which have waistbands that may cover any part of the picture of Thomas the Tank Engine on one's shirt.
His teacher is at a loss as to how to deal with Sean when he is refusing to comply with a requirement. She wants him to wash his hands and instead of just doing it, he doesn't see why he should. She insists, and so he responds by laying down on the floor in a prone position, hoping to stay there until everyone around him forgets that he was supposed to wash his hands. At school, this cannot be tolerated, and I understand that. He's not learning anything, he is being disruptive and distracting, not to mention that some of the other kids might think laying on the floor like that is a good idea. But I don't know what to tell her! She wants to have a teacher's conference so that I can tell her what to do with him, and the only answer I have is "I don't know."
Once something like this happens to him during his day, it's over for the day for him. He immediately powers down like some robot on stand by. His arms go limp, his little robot gumball lights dim, and he will not cooperate again until the proper voice command in the correct voice print is administered. The, uh, proper voice command is :"SEAN!! Get yerself up off that floor NOW!!!" Proper voice print is MY voice. When he hears it, he knows, he better move, and I mean now. I do know that he does not like it when Mr. Principal gets involved. Such terrible authority makes him feel powerless and bitter. It may work for the moment, but I would hate for him to hate school or dread it every day.
I did finally find out the other day from the Special Services office why he was turned down for special ed services last year. He had several evaluations. OT, PT, speech, cognitive, and I don't remember what all. Every one of those evals said that services were recommended in the professional opinion of the evaluator. However, every eval ALSO said Sean had "advanced intelligence," "highly developed problem solving skills," "will learn more quickly than his peers," "advanced vocabulary skills," etc. The woman in the office told me that was why he was turned down for services-because he was "too smart." I wanted to say, "Excuse me, um, have you ever heard of AUTISM???"

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