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Great wise MNers, what are the REAL pitfalls of year 7 - for a (PFB) child with AS?

(132 Posts)
MrsS3 Fri 29-Jun-12 00:43:41

We're doing the obvious stuff, uniform (done) numerous visits done and ongoing, form / tutor group with a few familiar faces (done) and photos of the teachers he'll need to remember.
However, I can't help but feel that it's like buying a cot and a pram for a new baby before realising you've not got a clue how to deal with it in reality and the actual practicalities are a whole lot different. Possibly a rubbish analogy but it makes sense to me blush. I don't want to have got the kit and the book but entirely missed the bits that will really matter. Any tips?

takeonboard Fri 29-Jun-12 10:16:16

Organisation I would say is the steepest learning curve in Y7.

It helps to pack the bag the night before.
Get into a routine of doing homework as soon as he/she gets home.
Charge phone/sort out money for next day the night before.
Don't be alarmed at the amount of stuff he/she will lose, but it will help if everything is labelled - and I mean everything!
Have a copy of the timetable and homework timetable at home for you to refer to.

Good luck, it will all work out fine smile

Kez100 Fri 29-Jun-12 10:23:39

If they have lockers, buy your son a lanyard to attach the key to.

minesawine Fri 29-Jun-12 11:44:49

My son has his induction day today and got to the school excited, but had forgotten the homework they had set him, which he was supposed to hand in today. This is despite me reminding him three times this morning. I had to then take it into the school much to his embarrassment in front of his new school friends.

I hold no hope at all and know I will have to be on his back to get him organised or nothing will get done

coppertop Fri 29-Jun-12 12:02:18

My ds (ASD) is just reaching the end of Yr7.

Things that have helped him are:

- A "what to do if " list - This is where you plan with him what he needs to do if he gets lost, he feels ill, he forgets his packed lunch/PE kit/dinner money.

- Keep an eye on the school website for any events that might mean a change to the usual routine, eg times when the whole day is spent on one particular subject or theme. You won't necessarily get a letter about these.

- Find out his tutor's school e-mail address, as they are usually the first person you will need to speak to about any issues.

- Keep a big stash of pens, pencils, rulers etc because these are the things that will go missing regularly.

- If he finds lunchtimes difficult, find out whether there is a club or room he can go to. Ours has a drop-in room for Yr7s who want somewhere quiet to go.

adeucalione Fri 29-Jun-12 13:39:56

Don't buy a bag or pencil case until after they have started, because the ones you bought won't be the 'cool' ones and you'll have to buy new ones anyway or put up with months of moaning.

Don't bother buying a warm coat or any other form of sensible clothing because they won't wear them.

ToryLovell Fri 29-Jun-12 14:12:27

This was me 2 years ago

Get a copy of his timetable and make several copies to keep at home for when he loses his - ditto for his locker key.

We used one of these labelled for each day of the week so he could put his books into at the end of each day and take them out to put in his bag for the next day.

If you can park near the school at the end of the day, see what shoes and bags seem popular and buy appropriately, but not expensively as it will no doubt get lost.

Name labels in everything even though it is not cool at secondary

There are lots of other things regarding organisation that I can suggest, but I guess it depends how much support you feel he needs and whether you want to do the organisation for him or try to encourage independence - different for different children.

MrsS3 Sun 01-Jul-12 11:35:01

you lot are absolutely fantastic. Angels, all of you smile Am going to do absolutely all of the above. Locker keys, lanyards, lists, the lot. I lurve you, MNers.

MrsS3 Sun 01-Jul-12 11:37:48

have bought him a reasonably fashionable read Not Geeky black waterproof, because the trouble is that he will wear it. And would happily have been looking somewhat like a trainspotter. blush

KitKatGirl1 Sun 01-Jul-12 13:04:36

Mine too, MrsS3, that's the problem with AS - you have to teach them what's cool so that they don't get picked on:-(

ToryLovell Sun 01-Jul-12 13:09:40

grin MrsS3 - it's not cool to wear a coat, so if he's not wearing one then he is fitting in.

ToryLovell Sun 01-Jul-12 13:12:56

Actually that reminds me of a big learning curve, regarding being cool.

At primary they are very sheltered and nurtured and anyone doing anything wrong is reported to the teacher and it is dealt with.

DS fully expected secondary to be the same, yet there is the unwritten rule about grassing on one's peers for minor misdemeanour that DS still at nearly 14 struggles with.

There are kids smoking and swearing and he knows that this is wrong - he had to be told that he didn't need to start lecturing them on the dangers of smoking etc. Good old theory of mind meant that he thought that they must not have known that smoking was dangerous, else why would they do it?

MrsS3 Sun 01-Jul-12 20:47:47

Fantastic grin Will start teaching him ignoring skills now, thanks for the heads-up. We love ToM [rolls eyes]
Round here most do seem to wear a black waterproof jacket thing, so long as it's one of a couple of brands and you pull the elastic round the bottom of the jacket right in hmm. Have told him "this is how you will wear it" [aka not like trainspotter, and it's black instead of his preferred green lol] It's not easy for any kid, let alone with AS in the way...

KitKatGirl1 Sun 01-Jul-12 21:43:07

Oh my goodness, ToryLovell, that is my ds exactly. He is always lecturing people on the evils of smoking, tucking their shirts in, wearing sensible shoes/coats etc. Am hoping he will be relatively okay as is going to an independent where most of the kids seem to be real geeks too:-)

MrsS3 Sun 01-Jul-12 22:56:07

oh goodness yes, going on at people about tucking their shirts in, fastening their shoes and wearing "smart" shoes. Is that an Aspie classic?

KitKatGirl1 Mon 02-Jul-12 11:51:20

Exactly, and telling other children to listen to the teacher etc etc.

(Sometimes it really gets my goat when people (incl teachers) use 'SEN' to mean it's a problem to have any in their class). The two Aspie boys in my son's class are the best behaved as well as amongst the highest achievers. Hmm, got that off my chest).

Thanks to coppertop for the 'what to do if ' list idea. Will def use that!

Good luck to all our (pfb) Aspies for secondary:-)

teacherwith2kids Mon 02-Jul-12 12:39:33

Oooooooooh I love you all.

PFB off to his trial day at secondary tomorrow and he will need ALL the above.

We're currently on 'spotting whether boys actually wear the school jumper' (as it's on the list but may not be worn IYSWIM) duty. DS has a tally chart he keeps in his primary school bookbag and he marks it whenever he sees a previously un-spotted secondary school boy to say
a) black or grey trousers
b) jumper or not

takeonboard Mon 02-Jul-12 16:54:49

My DS will not wear a coat, whatever the weather but he wore his jumper every day from November until May!

I think that every school has its own cool code... and for that reason their choice of bag is VERY important!!

MrsS3 Mon 02-Jul-12 21:55:52

He's off for the first of three "orientation days" tomorrow. Chances are he'll be showing the rest where to go as he's done so many visits that he knows his way round. I've actually told him not to blush but hey.
Would any of you like to hang on to a thread to share tips/ traumas / ideas as we venture with our pfbs towards high school? Or is it just me being a wuss?

MrsS3 Mon 02-Jul-12 22:18:22

(just one more thing) did someone say get two ties?

basildonbond Mon 02-Jul-12 22:51:45

ds is just finishing Y7 - it's actually gone a lot better than I'd feared

It helps that the school is just round the corner and that all the kids from primary went there so he had a base of familiarity to start with

he has real problems with organisation so we have at least 2 timetables at home and I make him pack his bag the night before - this is slow-going - bearing in mind we've been doing this for nearly a year now I still have to remind him to take out stuff he doesn't need and go through his timetable checking what he does need!

I've got most of his friends' parents' emails so when he comes home with the cryptic message in his planner "do thing" I can ask someone else in his class what on earth that might mean ..

and I wouldn't expect too much in the way of joining in - ds hasn't joined any clubs etc and has hardly seen anyone outside school - I think that school in itself is so overwhelming that he can't cope with any more social interaction just at the moment

sphil Mon 02-Jul-12 23:02:46

This is a brilliant thread - Ds1 is dyspraxic and has his induction day on Wednesday. I will be using all these tips! I had to smile at te trainspotting waterproof wearing - this is EXACTLY my DS, except that he tops it all off by putting the hood up. Whether its raining or not. Probably not the coolest of looks.

takeonboard Mon 02-Jul-12 23:04:24

Get 2 ties as a minimum, 3 would be better...stuff just disappears into thin air apparently hmm

basildonbond Tue 03-Jul-12 08:29:11

I really wouldn't worry too much about being 'cool' - our idea as parents as to what's cool among 11 and 12 year olds will be slightly off the mark, however much research we do and one thing my ds can't do is notice the subtle things which make one child achingly cool and another just a wannabe.

I make sure that ds's clothes fit - nothing worse than slightly too short trousers on a very tall, skinny, gawky boy - but other than that we don't worry about what's cool and ds isn't bothered at all. It helps that he's in a selective stream at his school and there are lots of other slightly geeky children there so he doesn't stand out as much as in a more streetwise cohort.

basildonbond Tue 03-Jul-12 08:35:54

sorry - forgot! PE kit just vanishes - and then mysteriously reappears .... so make sure you've got at least one spare kit in case of emergencies

amazingly the tie's not gone missing - but my top tie tip for dyspraxic dc is for them or you to tie it in the morning and then if they have to take it off for PE, just loosen it and slip it over their head meaning they don't have to retie it afterwards

after years of polo shirt wearing at primary, ds found formal shirt buttons tricky - I had to remind him several times to start buttoning from the bottom otherwise we had a button/button-hole mismatch

if dressing is tricky, get them to practise in the summer holidays - and it also gets them used to the different feel of the clothes if that's an issue

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