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Please could I ask for some advice from any teachers or successful home schooling parents

(17 Posts)
Lyndassniff Fri 01-May-20 19:17:12

My DS1 is in year 6 and has a dx of ASD. He has been given plenty of work to do by school. However, he is completely refusing to do anything without me sitting next to him giving him the answers.

I bought some of the CPG ten minute work books in an attempt to give him short, not too intimidating pieces of work to do. I asked him to just read one of the very short passages in the reading book while I helped DS2 with something, adn I would come and look at the questions with him. He refused to even read the passage without me sitting next to him.

Today he was supposed to do an English task set by school. He was asked to write a sentence with a preposition in it. I asked if he knew what a preposition was. He said no, so I wrote down a list of them. I asked if he could use one in a sentence. He said no. I asked if he could tell me something that he could be behind, underneath etc He said no. I asked what we do with a trampoline. He said he didn't know. I ended up just dictating sentences for him to copy down.

I realize that creative writing does something he enjoys or finds easy. I just want to help him to gain the basic skills he needs. How do I encourage him to think a bit and do some work independently?

Thank you

OP’s posts: |
DelphiniumBlue Fri 01-May-20 19:26:32

I'd contact the teacher to find out if this is normal for DS. Is he used to a lot of support at school? Does he usually do the same work as the rest of the class?

TW2013 Fri 01-May-20 19:32:18

Which age group cgp 10 minute tests? The main marketing for them is for children preparing for the 11 plus (before lockdown) They might not be quite as easy as you hope.

Lyndassniff Fri 01-May-20 20:17:37

Thank you very much for your replies.

They are the KS2 SAT buster CPG books. His teacher recommended them for him.

He does need extra help at school and he is in a small group for maths. I am not expecting him to be completing all of the work with no support. I am just concerned that we are wasting a huge amount of time sitting at our kitchen table with me just telling him what to write. He is not learning or improving his skills. He is the same with maths, English and topic work. I need a gentle way of encouraging him that does not make him too anxious.

OP’s posts: |
MAsMum Fri 01-May-20 22:37:46

This won’t work for all of your son’s written work but I’ve found when my kids are resisting that if I make the learning activity a game - something that they wouldn’t be allowed to do in class they suddenly like it.
Pick 5 objects preferably things that he likes eg teddy/ Lego etc and then create a treasure hunt by hiding them around the house. ( I like to put them in funny places - the less it seems like school the better). I like to think of prepositions as words that can be inserted into this sentence (——— the table) e.g on the table/above the tv/ under the table The football is on the toilet. The Lego is under the table. Then he can pick a sentence and write it in his book.

MAsMum Fri 01-May-20 22:47:04

Also it might be better to get him to do Joe Wicks or similar whilst you are working with DS2. This will give you time with DS2 plus the exercise stretching will help him. Get him to do the h/w after the exercise. For maths, top marks games on iPads/pc will be good for mental maths. Try Twinkl for the 10 min ks2 quick comprehensions. Grammar - BBC Bitesize clips or oak national might also help.

Beetlebum1981 Fri 01-May-20 23:06:02

Could you email his teacher and ask them to have a word with him? We've had to do it with a few children at school!

station6 Sun 03-May-20 11:54:33

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Grasspigeons Sun 03-May-20 12:07:14

Picking up on the ASD element - there is a specialist school near ehere i live who do the outreach service to local mainstream schools to hekp them teach children with ASD. This section on their website has some good tips on promoting independence in learning.
I hope there are some tips you can use.

EducatingArti Sun 03-May-20 12:18:46

I am a tutor who has often worked with students with ASD
My feeling is that this sudden change, which is emotionally difficult for all of us, will be pretty overwhelming for him. In his mind ,school is where he does English, Maths etc, not home and his refusal to do anything where he has to 'think' is his way of protecting himself against the overwhelming feelings he has about the change.
By reacting the way he is, he is trying to maintain some sense of control and keep school as school and home as home, even when it isn't iyswim.

Doing some gentle wondering might help. "I'm wondering if you have some really tricky feelings when you think about doing school work at home"
Lot of emphasising of how you know it is easy to feel really wobbly about having to do school at home
Lots of sensory activities to help process feelings ( eg sand pit and plasticine and water play, silly games where you bury him under sofa cushions with gentle pressure or roll him up in a rug. If he feels too old for this then what about making bread and spending a long time kneading dough)

Offering controlled choices might work. How about planning different activities for different slots in the day but letting him choose which go in which slot. Having some sort of written timetable may also help ( even if he can actually remember without it written down, there is security and control in having it available to look at)

You could try naming feelings for him as he may not understand what he is feeling so " it is ok to feel sad that I can't see my teacher" "it is ok to feel cross that school work has to be at home for now"
You might even be able to write some social stories that will help him.
If he is year 6, he will be also having to deal with all the thoughts of transitioning to secondary school without the usual support from teachers etc.
I'm guessing his refusal to think about work is really the only way he feels he can manage all of this. ( If I don't engage it isn't really happening)
I'd really focus on stuff that can help him manage and deal with the emotional stuff while keeping the school learning opportunities and see if he gradually begins to engage more.

Grasspigeons Sun 03-May-20 12:23:15

EducatingArti - you sound amazing! Can you come tutor my son.

EducatingArti Sun 03-May-20 12:45:38

😁Thank you @Grasspigeons.
Unfortunately I can't come and tutor anyone right now! ☹️
I'm tutoring a few of my students online but only the older ones or those that don't have significant learning difficulties or additional needs. It is just too hard to communicate effectively via a screen with some of my students.
I'm really not sure how my business is going to work longer term. I'm not sure I can tutor at a distance of 2m. I need to be able to be really responsive to the student and at that distance, I won't even be able to read what they are writing!!

ilovesushi Sun 03-May-20 17:55:26

Could you just put the sats related work to one side for a while and set him things he could get on with on his own. I think you said he likes creative writing? Let him spend time reading books and sign up to Khan Academy or mathletics for maths. He may not be sats ready, but I don't think he'd be in a bad place either! Hopefully he would regain his confidence in himself too! Good luck. We're also struggling. x

Lyndassniff Sun 03-May-20 19:33:23

Thank you so much for all of your suggestions and help.

Grasspigeons, that website is brilliant. It has so many helpful ideas and suggestions. It is also helped me with my younger NT son who is a little perfectionist. A mini white board has got him writing again.

EducatingArti you have described my son and his difficulties perfectly. It is like you have actually met him. Thank you. I think I sometimes forget what it is like for him. I am so desperate to encourage him to learn and do his work.

I think my eagerness to spill everything out on to the screen caused me to make lots of typing mistakes. I was trying to say that he finds creative writing very difficult. It was entirely my fault that I did not express that properly.

Thank you so much, everyone who has contributed to this thread. I feel much less alone and you all understand my son so well.

OP’s posts: |
EducatingArti Mon 04-May-20 09:13:49

It is very usual for children with ASD to find creative writing difficult.
Try a short story he already knows and get him to think of a different ending.
If he likes drawing then see if he will draw cartoons or storyboards. It can help to separate the imaginative part from the physical writing part.

minisoksmakehardwork Mon 04-May-20 15:27:31

@Lyndassniff - you are not alone. I have an ADHD child, who his teachers suspect is HFA who also does not like doing school work at home. And writing is not his forte - give him maths and he is happy as Larry. We use his current focuses (obsessions) to direct his writing. Last week it was about Pandas, this week he is fixed on Minecraft again. We've even got his train set out and had it on the table with him acting out a story and then writing it down - admittedly most of it is him re-enacting various epidosed of Thomas the Tank Engine, but it is encouraging him to write. I've even done sentence starters for him when he gets stuck. Unfortunately, a lot of it is still spoon fed for him. But he is very much the same in class when it comes to creative writing - as little as possible and on to the next task.

Titsywoo Wed 06-May-20 11:53:35

I find english very hard to teach to my ASD DS. Was just doing a workbook with him on treasure island (he is in y8) and it was giving him quotes and asking him to list any simile/alliteration etc (he can do that easily) then asked how the quotes would make the reader feel. This is not something that his mind can compute grin

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