Tyler’s annual ARD is coming up next week and his teacher has been working on the review and goals to discuss. I am going to share some of the excerpts from that because this progress is absolutely amazing and so much of it has been made this year!
When reading this I was THRILLED – When he’s capable of achieving much of this at school does it automatically mean in all environments – no. Does it mean I completely change is routines no, it just shows progress and with AU, progress is just that – baby stepped progress! Comfort environments provide different success than other environments.
REMINDERS: The Autism Spectrum is VERY VERY BROAD – Tyler is diagnosed as Classic Autism and SPD, Verbal Processing Delay, (about midway on the spectrum) was diagnosed at age 5 – Non Verbal (years of speech therapy, school and home therapy) have produced words (Tyler’ very echolalic) but we have so much work to do on actual communication and comprehension. Tyler is very very sensory, does not like music, crowds, large environments, lots of stims, very very structured and routine. For a few years, Tyler was very very aggressive and impulsive (inability to truly communicate and sensory issues can produce aggression), giggles and laughter could easily be onsets of meltdowns. About 4-5 years ago I placed Tyler on medication in order to help with anxiety issues and impulsive behaviors so that we could attend behavioral therapy and attempt to learn calming and coping skills and then I worked on decreasing medication and he’s been medication free for 6 mos and with an YLEO regimen his improvements have been massive! Just a reminder to the delay Tyler is I began potty training Tyler at age 4 and it wasn’t until he was 8 1/2 that he was fully potty-trained. You train, you back off, you train, you back off, etc. I have to work with food issues (because I believe in dietary restrictions – most of the time have benefitted Tyler). Therapies have long waiting lists and can be costly what is not covered by insurance, and even with therapies, you have to incorporate and work on things outside that therapy time. Lots of books and videos out there to help. There is much more to Tyler’s AU journey – just ask and I can share. Tyler’s progress has already gone leaps and bounds what was initially predicted for him. He still has a long way to go but so so proud of how far he’s come!
SO HERE ARE SOME OF THE NOTES THE TEACHER HAS SHARED AND SOME I AM VERY PROUD OF AS WE BEGIN TO TRANSITION INTO HIGH SCHOOL I JUST CAN’T GET OVER THE PROGRESS MADE FROM 7TH GRADE TO NOW 8TH GRADE AND THIS YEAR (8TH) BEING SOME MAJOR MAJOR PROGRESS (I began incorporating YLEO with Tyler in the 7th grade in small steps but have really increased the use of various YLEO products since June of 2016 (with continued other supplements and dietary restrictions) – Please note Tyler is in Life Skills so the high school years will be different for preparation into a world after high school – When managing autism, I manage symptons, traits and behaviors in order to help them cope with environments and have the ability to learn academics, life skills an social skills – this is my approach and is only my opinion. So check out these amazing notes from his teacher as we prepare for ARD – these are NOT Tyler’s goals this are just Tyler’s accomplishments and situation (for now). I also want to give a shout out to LPISD and Tyler’s Autism team! From PPCD to present, Tyler has been blessed with the most amazing teachers and paras! His actual AU team is pretty darn amazing too! His tutor is amazing and he’s had great OT and Speech therapist at the school and at TCH (which we are still in speech therapy at TCH and I take him private tutoring on Mondays after school) I give the background, because the progress doesn’t seem that amazing unless you know LOL:
Tyler appears happy at school. He appears to be comfortable and secure while at school. He comes into the school building independently and goes to meet his teacher. If his teacher is not in the normal place, he is able to problem solve without getting upset. He will look in the classroom or by the buses. If he arrives at school during the school day, he reports to the classroom. He is able to read signs on the door and locate the class in other locations. Tyler interacts with his classmates appropriately. He makes observations and will ask what’s wrong and pick up something if someone drops something. He requires some prompts to put things down or not pick them up or put them in the trash when they may be inappropriate. For example, he will pick up trash in hallway or bathroom and bring it to class. He compliments others. He requires some prompts for appropriateness. For example, nice lipstick instead of nice lips and nice hair or I like your curls instead of messy hair or funny hair. He generally comments about the physical appearance of others.
When corrected he generally initiates an apology a little later. He has an occasional tendency to be loud at times (ex. Giggling or clapping) at inappropriate times. He needs a few prompts to stop when asked.
When he is given a work task or assignment, he will start within a minute unless he is unsure of the instructions. He likes reassurance when completing a new task/activity. He will get the teachers attention by making a comment. He will alert the teacher when he is finished. He occasionally will put his head down or just sit when finished. Tyler is able to work up to 45 minutes without a break in a group or with the teacher. He prefers to work in close proximity of the teacher. He can work independently for 15 minutes and will continue working with a prompt. He is also able to work with the teacher and read a text and stay focused while others are talking and/or doing a different assignment.
During unstructured activities, Tyler likes to work alone but will sit with peers. He does interact with familiar peers by making comments or when a peer asks a question. He likes to build with cups, Legos, and other blocks/manipulatives. He likes to knock things down and pick them up. He greets others when they come into the classroom and generally asks their names. Given free time, Tyler will act out movies and likes to look in mirrors.
Tyler’s motor skills are appropriate for school related tasks. He participates in PE with his peers and dresses out for PE independently. Tyler cannot tie his shoes and will occasionally need help with his belt if it is too tight. He is able to eat lunch and breakfast with minimal supervision.
Tyler prefers quiet activities but will wear headphones when others get loud or if he is in a crowded environment. He does not prefer to attend school-wide events such as pep rallies or assemblies but will attend and sit near the door or away from the event. He has been the greeter at the door for the events and appears to be okay during the events. He will eat lunch in the cafeteria but given a choice he likes to eat in the classroom with a few peers.
ELA: Tyler will relate things or events in stories to movies. Given a third grade text, Tyler reads with minimal support for new vocabulary. Given a third grade text he can answer multiple choice questions and recall main idea and supporting details. When getting something incorrect, he can use the text to find the information. He can sequence events using words, first, second, third and beginning, middle, and end. He can answer questions related to compare and contrast, inferencing, and author’s purpose. He can answer true/false questions with minimal prompts. Tyler’s comprehension increases when a text is read aloud and has pictures. It also increases with nonfiction text versus fiction text. He reads with inflection for questions, exclamation points, and emotion words. He self corrects when reading. If there are new vocabulary words he will read it phonetically and continue. He does not ask for help. Tyler can answer who, what, where questions with minimal verbal cues. He needs moderate prompts to answer why and how questions. Tyler needs assistance with identifying synonyms, antonyms and new vocabulary. When given a choice of books, Tyler chooses books about animals. Given independent work for reading, Tyler needs work on a first-second grade level.
Math: Tyler can add, subtract, multiply and divide numbers using a calculator. Tyler can identify numbers to the hundred thousandths place with minimal cues. He can add double digit numbers with and without regrouping without the use of a calculator or manipulatives. He requires prompts to complete subtraction problems with require borrowing. He can identify coins and their values. He can add mixed sets of coins and bills to $100 with minimal cues. He can count change back given additional time. He struggles with speed and will continue to work adding and subtracting money as well as making purchases. He needs cues to line numbers up correctly when writing addition and subtraction problems (especially when a decimal is included). Tyler an identify time to the minute on a digital and analog clock. He is currently working on consistency with identifying fractions.
Tyler can answer simple questions about simple graphs and charts.
Tyler participates in classroom jobs with minimal cues for neatness and completion. He participates in jobs such as folding and putting away laundry, starting and loading/unloading the washing machine and dryer, stocking drinks, wiping/cleaning countertops and tables, and loading/unloading the dishwasher.
He participates in cooking activities by pouring, stirring, measuring ingredients, and reading recipes with minimal prompts to participate and for correct measurements. He is able to retrieve requested items from the refrigerator or pantry. He is able to retrieve utensils and cookware with minimal prompts.