Buzz loves watching science and nature programmes; he soaks it all up like there’s no tomorrow. It’s amazing how much we can both learn thanks to people like Brian Cox, Chris Packham and David Attenborough. Today we’re watching Wonders of the Universe with Brian Cox and have learned about entropy amongst other things. In our pyjamas!
Homeschooling is made easier for us by the fact Buzz loves to learn. I feared that school may well have quashed that out of him, it seemed to be beginning to, because he wasn’t able to conform to the set way he was supposed to learn. He needs time to explore and put to the test what he learns, to talk about it, to explore it with all his senses, to enact it, otherwise it’s just skimming over the surface of him. Thankfully we have all the time he needs!
I suggested we write a poem as Buzz always comes out with very poetic sounding phrases, but he suggested we write tongue twisters instead. Homeschooling is mostly Buzz-led so that’s what we did. Here they are. Some written by Buzz, some by me. Let us know which was the hardest to repeat over and over as we’re having a competition between us!
Ali asks Alan about antelopes and anteaters.
Busy buzzy Barnabas bakes bread beautifully.
Can cows count cantankerous crickets?
Does Darren dance delightfully?
Elephants eat elderberries early in England.
Gorgeous guineas graze on grass gratefully.
Lily lies laughing like Little Lola.
Silly Sam sings silly songs on sunny Saturdays.
Timmy titters to tiny turtles.
We only intended to make a little broken pot garden (pot got broken in the latest wind storm, but nothing is trash in this household!), but we got carried away and made three little gardens: a broken pot cascading garden, a hanging basket, and a little miniature village. The bare patch on the village has grass seeds, we will be making it into a little playground on a lawn.
Our family’s animal rescue ethos extends way beyond guinea pigs! Before Dad mows the lawn we have to carefully rifle through the grass in search of these beauties, of which we get many in our front and back gardens, and move them to the area of the garden we’ve set up as a safe frog habitat. I’m not sure Buzz is quite as obsessed with bugs and mini beasts as I was as a child but he certainly has a strong appreciation for them. 💚
I have just been in tears watching this video because I’ve never seen or read anything that explains, shows and describes the way Buzz struggles that is quite so spot-on.
THIS is why I home school. THIS is why I couldn’t go to post-natal groups and toddler groups. THIS is why we join in outdoors activities but avoid indoor activities. THIS is the struggle that goes un-noticed as my son holds on to his feelings, his anxieties, his panic, his fear, his over-excitement, his over-stimulation, as he works so hard to keep himself together and hide his struggles…. THIS is why he comes through the front door into his ‘safe zone’ and breaks down into an inconsolable wreck of utter physical, emotional and mental exhaustion.
THIS is high functioning autism. The kind of autism that so often goes unnoticed because the kids are aware enough to know there is a certain etiquette to which they must adhere, but struggle enough that having to adhere to it is overwhelming. The kind of autism that results in so many HF-ASD kids being misunderstood, unsupported, and often, ultimately, homeschooled. The kind of autism that has parents being judged as not giving their children the appropriate discipline when in fact they have more and clearer boundaries in place than any other parent they know. The kind of autism that results in kids being told they are naughty when in fact they are terrified to over-step the boundaries; to be punished. The kind of autism that the parents hardly ever talk about, but think about non-stop as they analyse every possible scenario within every situation and take endless measures and steps on a minute-by-minute basis to avoid this kind of physical, mental and emotional overload.
But… this is also the child who hears every bird singing… “I heard a blackbird over there, and a robin over there.” This is also the child who cries emotional tears when they feel the warmth of the first Spring day on their face. This is also the child who will see the tiny speck of a buzzard high in the sky that everyone else takes an age to pinpoint! This is also the child who will notice the most vulnerable person in the room, and will make sure they know they have a friend in him.
THIS is my perfect, beautiful son.
Finally. We can leave the house. Fresh air. Vitamin D. Let off steam. Miniature Railway is open again. Head space and time out while the boy plays. Phew! If we didn’t have the issue of my medical care needs we would seriously consider moving to warmer climes, winter is tough to say the least.
We did a bit of science while we were here. And I was impressed Buzz recognised the song of a robin. Bird spotter in the making!