Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Harvesting Charlie

Charlie is a challenge in most everything. He is a high-functioning autistic child, and we suspect that he also has ADHD, which creates a large barrier to many things in his life. The classroom experience for Charlie is difficult at best. Last year, he was in preschool three days a week, where they tried to teach him letters and numbers, but only succeeded in teaching him not to turn the light switch in the bathroom on and off. Thus, I am beset with the duty of teaching him letters and numbers between now and September.

However, within two weeks, between his will to learn, despite his lack of focus, and my determination to show the teachers that the boy is teachable, Charlie has learned all of his letters, and he can recognize and count his numbers to ten. Not only can he count them, but he has discovered, completely on his own, that if you take two fish away from five fish, you end up with three fish. This phenomenon thrills him to no end, and, I suspect that math will most likely be his strong subject.

Charlie can, indeed, be a challenge; but he is a challenge worth taking on. He is highly intelligent for a boy his age (five), and I see a lot of potential in him. The biggest part of the challenge is getting him to focus on the task at hand, and not wander off to terrorize the poor kitty.

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