Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Bicycle Race

First grade has not been easy. We are two months in and we are finally spending quality time in the classroom. We are no longer having aggressive or violent outbursts. My wife and I are trying our hardest at home to keep up the academic skills that he has been missing by spending so much time out of the classroom, and it's very hard.

We are so concerned these days that we may have pushed for bad choices regarding placement. Let's rephrase that to "inappropriate" choices regarding placement. We are beat over the head with phrases like "least restrictive environment", and "access to the learning environment", and "disruptive behavior"... so much so that they have almost become pronouns in our house. But there is good news. We are, at long last, moving forward again. We took about 8 steps back, but we're 3 or 4 steps forward.

That's all I want to say about Jack's recent regression right now.

Here's what I want to say about Jack.

Jack turned six about 2 weeks ago and for his birthday, I bought him a bike. Jack has very poor proprioceptive processing skills and presents as extremely clumsy. Most children can ride a bike with training wheels around 4 years old... some earlier, some later. There are so many moments that we as parents of special needs children will be robbed of.

But not this one. Fatherhood may not be exactly what I expected it to be. I figured I'd have all those great Americana moments that all fathers have.

And here it is. I got to teach my son how to ride his bike.

So, what do we say when Autism comes to take away another memory?

"Not today"

That's my son. Riding the fuck out of his new bike.


  1. 2nd picture,, that's a boy looking for a jump!!

  2. Our son had problems with school too. For two years we thought it was him. We believed the school was doing everything right and everything they could. The first three weeks of grade 1 we dealt with rage meltdowns every day before and after school. We finally clued in that something just wasn't right. When my son started telling me that his helper was holding him down again after we gave them a letter stating they could not restrain him. I knew we had to find an option B. We found him a private school that only works with kids on the spectrum. He's been there for three weeks now. After the third day the rage meltdowns were gone, he can read and is doing grade 2 math. If I had not seen the change in my son just by changing the environment I wouldn't believe it. Although the old school believes they were doing everything right, clearly they were doing it wrong. I don't have faith in the public school system now. They can't make it fair for everyone. And when our children are so young, they don't have the skills to cope. I wish you and your family good luck for the future. It's not going to be easy.

  3. I notice a huge improvement with kids who learn to ride a bike. First it shows derermination and the kids that are determined show us that when they want to learn a skill they can!!! Huge. The other reason it is one of the best "self directed" sensory activities. It is an enormous amount of appropriate sensory input his nervous system is craving and needs to develop because he may not have registered it earlier. I would even say if he is having a tough day to go for a bike ride. Go jack!! Love me some jack love auntie leggie

  4. Way to ride, Jack!!!! :) ❤

    My Dad gave me my first bike in first grade and I'll never forget that day, ever. ❤