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[personal profile] femkes_follies
One of the quandries of dealing with Autism is what to do with the girls.

They're both in school programming all day.

When they get home, do I leave them to do their own thing? Do I push? What do I push? Academics? (Workbooks, flashcards, reading, basic math) Physical activity? (Dance, swimming, gymnastics, playgrounds) Art stuff? (music, drawing, painting, etc.)

How HARD do I push? Do I pick one thing that each of them SEEM to enjoy at the moment, and focus on it in the hopes that success will encourage them and that activity might help improve other facets of their abilities? Or go with divergent things - knowing that with them, not having time to repeat/repeat/repeat will mean that at best they'll be just skimming the surface, however much they enjoy it?

Do I MAKE Them practice? Because that's the only way they're going to do it. Unless one or both of them suddenly is seized by an as-yet unidentified obsession for something.

Did you have a "hobby" as a kid? (piano, violin, dance, softball...) Did you pick it, or did your parents? Did they have to make you practice? All the time? Some of the time? Did you eventually quit? How do you feel now about having quit?

What about extra academics? My mother had workbooks for us in the summer. Yours? I'm still not sure whether Mom pushed apptitudes that she saw, or that she wanted to see success in. Was I a math whiz? Or did she sort of "create" that? I certainly never could hang with the real Math Club in college. But I did have some success in the statewide math competition, among other things. Possibly it's a function of my scanner brain again. Once I'd gotten to what I considered "competency" I no longer had enough interest to lose myself in the "higher maths"?

I don't want to "ruin" my children - either by failing to push hard enough or by arm twisting into things they don't want to do. I'm not sure Liesl can as yet get the connection between practice and success. In fact, I'm not sure she really gets the connection between what she seems to WANT to be able to do and what the beginner steps are. Is it OK to push a little through some of the basic stuff to GET to the "fun parts" and then see if she can take it from there?

Any advice, anyone?
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