Archives for posts with tag: Homework

If I asked you what day it was, what would you say?  I think I would have to ask one of my children who would look on their phones and report the answer back to me.

I, myself, find our living so surreal.

We all typically love being home, but find ourselves seeing our home as a shelter from “the virus”

We typically love being together as a family but now find ourselves mostly seeing only each other’s faces.

In our state, spring is just arriving.  So that means the trees are starting to bloom, the flowers are starting to show themselves.  It all looks so pretty and full of life, which contrasts directly with what is going on in our world.

With the change of seasons comes a mental list of all the things that spring brings THAT WE CANNOT DO.  It is like we have to reorient that list because the backdrop to our Shelter in Place has changes.  In the last month, we have gotten used to understanding our new, temporary I pray, normal.  But there is something about spring arriving that brings brightness and hope and immediately requires  my brain to say…

WAIT!, REMEMBER YOU CAN’T…..insert spring related item here…..

This change in thinking is something that Elizabeth and I are talking about as we walk.  I know that she is feeling the same things that everyone else is because she asked me when the pool will open….so I am using our walk times to keep the chatting going. I think for us, this kind of talking/communicating is helpful because it is helps Elizabeth adjust what she thinks should now be happening with our continued reality.

We talk about feelings, make a list of the things we want to do when we are permitted, the fun she will have at work with her friends, later.  We talk because each day for Elizabeth brings feelings that I am learning NEED to be talked about today.

Then again tomorrow.

And the next day.

And the next day.

With Elizabeth’s special needs, talking about what to expect helps her make that mental transition more smoothly as well as vents her frustrations.  Her sensory processing disorder ( SPD) and its resulting anxiety can become a big player in her days, so talking about what to expect and how to adjust can help lower that anxiety.

I keep telling myself that I know I  am always mentally recalculating life and it is hard work!!  Let alone the special needs that our children face added in to the mix.

Since we cannot make the world fit the needs/wants of our special needs child, it is like we have to help them, as best we can, to understand and work with the world we all find ourselves deeply entrenched in.

I will share that Elizabeth’s telehealth last week went really well.  I have notes from Mary from it, that I need to make the brain space to process.  I will do it soon, but I cannot say exactly when.  We all know, life with a special needs child takes a lot of work minus this pandemic but becomes whole thing with it.  I also know we will always do our level best for these beautiful special children that we have!

So Corona day 24 is bringing in a new level of reality, maybe a bit more permanence as we leave one season behind and enter a new one.

Please stay safe and stay home if you can!

Michele Gianetti author of:

I Believe In You: A Mother and Daughter’s Special Journey

Emily’s Sister

Elizabeth Believes In Herself: The Special Journey Continues







Handwriting… All kids can find this difficult to master but special needs kids have a greater chance to experience the tears of frustration at school or at home while trying to get their homework done. The reason for this varies: either the body is not well positioned, the child lacks attention or coordination, there is a medical condition, you name it. Thankfully, there are exciting ways to promote handwriting skills that will work with almost every child!

5 tips handwriting

1. Grasp, grasp, grasp

Handwriting starts with good positioning of the whole body and fingers on the writing tool. It may be too abstract for your child to follow your directions as you explain or show them, so think of those pencil grips or claws to physically guide their hand. Heavy pens are another affordable and efficient way to improve their grasp by building hand muscles strength.

jumbo grip 1 claw medium 1 TPG-651

2. Lower the pressure

32090_3Handwriting problems often come from a too strong pressure applied by the child to the pen. Use stress balls at any time to encourage your child to relax their hand muscles and promote fine motor skills.

3. Feel the vibes

__017877_A_previewThe Squiggle Wiggle is a very original pen that vibrates, creating colored squiggles as an interesting alternative to drawing. It encourages fine motor control and helps your child appreciate writing while staying creative.

4. Have fun!

Think of fun activities that involve writing or drawing such as: drawing around your hand, making an herbarium (simply run a color pencil on a paper to transfer leaves’ relief), or playing Pictionary with the whole family! They should improve your child’s handwriting skills without tears.

iStock_000013308707_Large Herbarium Pictionary

5. Play (yes, play!)

TPG-654 OpenLet kids play their favorite game on a phone or tablet with an adapted stylus. They look just like a pen and will train them as if it were the real thing… except they are playing!

If those simple tips are still not effective enough, don’t hesitate to ask the help of an Occupational Therapist who will have a better understanding of your child’s abilities.

Did you find new tips to try with your child in this article? If you have more tips, please share with other readers!

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