How are you feeling about the summer holidays which are approaching? Tense? Nervous? Anxious? With Dread? Or are you ok and welcome the rest from school runs and the routine of the academic calendar?
That is one of the big issues with this time of year, the routine of the timetable changes a lot now. There are sports days, induction sessions if moving schools, changes to some subjects and maybe an extra classroom change thrown in there too. I think most schools will try their best to keep this to a minimum but it can have a massive effect on a child with Autism.
I think our kids just feel this more than others and get ready to finish. Some though would prefer to carry on as the timetable keeps them focussed and on track alleviating a lot anxiety. Six weeks is a long time and it can be a massive ordeal trying to organise things to do and activities that will really interest our young ones. As long as they are happy and calm and you are less stressed as a parent then go with the flow. Do what you feel your young one needs. There are going to be changes and days where they won't want to do as you planned and you kind of have to be prepared for that. It can be disappointing but the most important thing is keep stress levels down to a minimum.
Maybe it would be good to make a timetable similar to that at school. Not with Maths and English on but with things you want to do, then there is structure and organisation. You could use pictures, photos or drawings. stickers make it fun as well. A calendar can just be as useful, my son just likes our kitchen calendar and always checks it to see what we have on, I just have to remember to keep t up to date.
You may be planning to go away on holiday which needs good planning too. Prepare your young person as much as possible from what will be involved regarding packing and go through a map of the journey. Make a scrapbook using pictures of where you are going, hotels, the surrounding areas and any trips you plan to take. It sounds a lot of work but you can make it fun and it will be worth it if it makes the whole experience easier.
Our Derby and District Branch of the NAS (National Autistic Society) have a meeting coming up on the 17th July where we will be holding a discussion on this subject and welcome anyone to come along who needs a few ideas and strategies on how to cope over the summer period.
We hold our meetings at The Farmhouse, 60 Ashbourne Rd, Mackworth, Derby DE22 4LY from 7pm-9pm in the Library Room. it's a lovely place to meet. We have tea and coffee on offer but there are also drinks available from the bar so please come along if you are in the local area.
Let me know how you cope and what works for you at this time of year as everyone deals with summer very differently so any ideas would be great to pass on.
Thank you for reading today, please come back tomorrow for Pass the Remote Sunday, keep cool and take care.
Every Saturday I will be talking about Autism and will review any useful information which may have been highlighted at any support groups in the week.