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Increasing My Independence

November 10, 2011

Today my little boy used scissors completely by himself for the first time! One small step for man, one giant leap for Rett.  So he’s went from never using scissors to being able to cut things on his own in 4 days. We’ve still got a ways to go but he can now put them on the table and pick them back up correctly (thanks Becca for that tip!) He also learned how to hold the paper with his other hand and cut without chopping off any fingers.  He cut up several strips of paper all by himself. Ok the cuts weren’t straight and the paper he got from this exercise wasn’t all that pretty but whatever.  These things take time. I’m just glad he got to this point so fast!




After that I attempted to use our newly cut little strips of paper and practice gluing them onto something.  Apparently recycling some of sissy’s scribbles here.  I cannot figure out how to explain glue. He LOVES to smear the glue around. Could care less about putting the paper on it.  Got to get creative with that one I guess!



I actually started Tot school off with this activity.  Rett is so hit or miss its hard to figure him out.  This is something my mother in law gave me. Its basically a laminated color sheet that you can erase and use over and over.  Rett LOVED it at the beach! He was really coloring with purpose and coloring in things for the first time.  I thought he liked the feel of the plastic better then paper. Today he wanted nothing to do with it. Go figure.




While Rett ‘colored’ Sissy and I finished her Thanksgiving plate up.


Here is Rett’s. I was going to try to attempt different colored fingers for Sis but she just kept closing her hand so whatever.  Feels nice to be able to have something to replace our Halloween art finally.



One new activity I did today was get out the memory game and set it up to have him match the pictures. Apparently this is something a lot of autistic children have issues with. Not Rett. I originally started with just 6 but added another 6 since it was too easy.  This was a perfect activity for him because he’s been really into saying two of this or that or one more.  He liked to pick up the pairs and say 2 umbrellas!  I think he’s finally catching on to counting up things.


I am seriously wanting the pom poms to be an independent activity.  I keep trying.  He knows what he is supposed to do but something about this activity gets him distracted. I don’t know if its the pom poms or what.  I left to help Sissy and when I came back he had taken off half the pom poms and had to redo them. He FINALLY finished but I basically had to sit there and tell him ‘Put it on a circle. Hurry.’   the ENTIRE time.  This activity is not difficult.  I love independent activities because he is working and I can get the next thing ready or help Sissy stay busy.



Keeping Sissy busy.




Keeping Sissy busy.



Keeping Sissy busy.


We went to swim today and it was swim with your clothes on.  Rett loved that. He did so great and actually ‘jumped’ off the diving board from a sitting position independently. Usually she has to grab his hand and then he’ll jump in.


Last night, Tom and I started working on Rett’s next phrase ‘Can I?’  Lately he has been getting on his window seat and jumping across to his bean bag.  So I held him on the window seat and Tom prompted him ‘say Can I jump?’  The idea was when he said it, Tom would say yes and he would be allowed to jump.  The beginning of these phrases are so freaking hard.   It is a lot of tears and upset Rett.  Finally I told Tom maybe we can just get him to say Can I build from there. He can say can because he says ‘I can do it!’ all day long.  But he couldn’t say can. He could say can’t.  Seriously. Can’t.   I did get him to say Can today so we’ll work again tonight.  And it is work. It is work for us to see our little boy so upset and seemingly like he can’t do it, even though we know and believe that he can.  Its work for him to be asked to do things he has never done before that is apparently very difficult.    It would be much easier to give in and leave him alone.  But we aren’t in this for ‘easier’.   The tough work is what brings about the best results for him.  And in the end, regardless of all the tears and frustration,  being able to communicate with the world is something worth working for.

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