Thursday, 5 September 2013

First Day Back at School

It seems like only yesterday the kids were packing up from school and now the summer holidays have come and gone and it’s time for them to start a new year. 
Our 3 kids all went back yesterday and it was greeted with mixed emotions like you expect for any child.  Our daughter had tummy ache all Tuesday night and couldn’t sleep due to stressing about moving up to Year 6, having new teachers, being in a different form room with a new form tutor. 
Our eldest son told me in the morning to wake him up ‘tomorrow’ as he needed another day in bed!! 
We had prepared our youngest son with a countdown chart of how many sleeps until he returned to school, but he has been telling us this week that he has to stay in Reception Year as he has not grown enough to be in Year 1.  He has not been looking forward to a change in classroom, teacher and after being in one big classroom with 60 children in Reception, the year group has now been split into 2 classes, with three of his five friends being in the other class.  It’s a big change for any 5 year old, but we know it will take him longer to adapt than most children in his class. All through the holidays we have been looking at photos of his new classroom and teacher to help familiarise him with the change in his school routine.
So far it seems fairly quiet in our house after the initial day back at school.  It normally takes a week or so for the reality to kick in that this is now the new daily routine and then the meltdowns will occur, as homework will need to be done, we need to be out the door on time each day to get to school, need to wear uniform etc.  Our youngest son has already opted for non school uniform shorts today, which is a sign he is anxious.  He has also taken 2 soft toys to school with him to cuddle and stroke – this is a calming tool for him.  During the holidays he has developed a habit of clicking with his tongue when he is anxious.  He whispered to me last night that he did click at school, but did it quietly so no one heard him.
It will probably take me a couple of weeks to get back into the routine of having the kids back at school as well.  My to do list is huge as the holidays always pose a problem for our 2 ASD children, as unless they have organised activities in place, they struggle to do things on their own and want me to be at their side all the time.  Our dining table is covered in paperwork, books on ASD to read, as I’m always looking for new ideas to help our kids and craft projects for me to do - I try and convince myself that I am entitled to the odd moment of relaxation!!  Before long we will all be back into the swing of school life, including the meltdowns – it’s part and parcel of family life with ASD, but I wouldn’t change our family for anything.

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