Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Letting Go of Ideals
I recently decided to push aside my ideas about natural learning (gasp, shock, horror!) and do what just works. The result can be seen in the photo adjacent. It doesn't look like much but it is HUGE, a massive effort from a boy who would not, could not, in his own mind possibly produce a whole page of writing. Even in this style I made some huge sacrifices in the name of letting go. There is no Queensland correct script, we are learning capitals only at this stage, and there is no pressure and no erasing during the lesson.
I see the parents of special needs children grasping at their remaining idealism all the time on the Internet. I see indignation over so many of the little things. I see arguments fiercely erupt (truth be told I have been involved) over whether children are Autistic or have Autism, whether it is a condition, disorder, disease, curable, preventable......etc. Maybe we should let go of these ideals and just do what works, it takes effort and trial and error to do what works but we sure as heck are not going to find out what that is if we sit around debating all day long. I never forget an experienced mother telling a group of new mothers that no matter what they believed, read, or wanted, ultimately the child and not the parent guides the choices you make for your child. She then went on to advise them to throw away the baby books. I think we need to go a step further and engage in the world with an open mind.