Thursday, 30 August 2012

Yee Haa! My Little Star!


It’s been a bit of a while since I’ve posted about Louis’ specific learning difficulty. I am still trying to get my head around how to deal with his diagnosis which has confirmed that  problems that he has within the domains of dyslexia, dyspraxia, attention, planning and auditory memory weren’t  just figments of my imagination.

Louis’ school has been given an excellent seal of approval by Ofsted.   As other parents have commented, it’s ideal for  compliant, sporty children, those that seem to be  in the majority in the middle class catchment area that it serves.  But it doesn’t suit my son who must present a  challenge to a class teacher with thirty odd kids in their care.  I’m well aware, from the dressing and teeth cleaning debacle that takes place most mornings that my intelligent, inquisitive lad’s attention start to wander and his  behaviour can deteriorate as soon as he’s presented with a task that doesn’t sufficiently grab his attention.  However those difficulties aren’t deemed severe enough to warrant any kind of special needs status.

I’m a klutz myself, and indeed someone who in all likelihood would have been diagnosed as dyspraxic  myself had the condition been around in Essex in the 1970s.  As such I’ve felt sport in school, with its emphasis on team games and athletic prowess, sets us nerdy, wimpy kids up for failure.  P.E. teachers, who let’s face it, are Jocks themselves, want to focus on nurturing those kids who can win the inter-school competitions with the kudos that goes with that.  So, let’s coach the aspiring Beckhams and Bolts and leave the less able throwing a bean bag around at sports day.  No wonder we have a ever increasing problem with obesity when children aren’t encouraged to develop a love of physical activity that might not involve winning.

It  feels that I’m taking the task of helping Louis attain a sense of accomplishment from sporty stuff which involves motor skills  into my own hands.  I encourage him to be proud of his prowess on his bike and  scooter.  As my regular readers are aware we do lots of outdoor ‘stuff’ together.  And I’ve thrown a bit of money at the dyspraxia problem with good effect.  A little bit of private coaching last year  gave Louis a kickstart he needed to develop the potential to be an pretty nifty skier when he’s older.  It’s all stuff that will keep him fit, engaged and on the straight and narrow.   A reasonably cheap investment I feel when its potential benefits for later life are considered.

Yesterday, Louis found he had a hidden talent as a lasso-ist.  He took to this swirly-whirly skill like a duck to water and got to perform at last night’s circus at the camp.  There was extra brownie points from me as he saved us money by winning a free ticket for his efforts.  Hearty thanks to the folk at Cirque Dumas for giving my  son a rare chance to  show off his own special gifts and shine!

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