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The night before my son had his IEP meeting I took a page out of a diary of a mom’s blog and talked to Chase about school – his concerns, what he liked, etc.  I’ve been doing a lot of reading a diary of a mom’s blog lately as I have prepared for his IEP and Jess does a great job of scripting with her daughter and I wanted to see if I could have similar results through recording our conversation.  Here is the transcript, interspersed with my comments after the fact in italics:

Mom:  Tomorrow mommy and daddy are going to talk to your teachers at school   What are some things that you like about school.

Chase When J is not there. (a boy that he had issues with last year)

Mom: Okay, what else do you like about school?

Chase: I like alot of things.

Mom: What do you like to do at school?

Chase:  do homework, math facts homework, I like to read.

Mom: Who do you read with?

Chase: A, because she’s my best friend.

Mom: What is hard for you at school.

Chase:  When J is there.

J was a boy in Chase’s Kindergarten class last year.  It was due to the altercations on the bus with this boy that Chase was kicked off the regular bus and placed on the small bus.  He and J were at constant odds, and no matter how many times I would say something the teacher said she never noticed anything.  Interestingly enough at a class activity I saw how the boy knew which buttons to push with my son to get him to meltdown, and he did it so under the raidar that it was almost imperceptible.  It is interesting how for the most part my son misses social cues, but he KNEW that this boy didn’t like him.  Chase’s therapist says that it is not uncommon for super kiddos like mine to perseverate not only on things, but instances that have happened in the past.  Chase doesn’t talk about any other child making school uncomfortable, so I will keep hoping that this continues.

Mom:  Well, he isn’t at your school anymore, so, what is hard at school?

Chase:  When I get throwed up,

That day he got sick at school and came home early.  I find it interesting that he thinks in the moment. 

Mom: ‘Kay what else.

Chase:  When I had a big white thing in my mouth and that is all.

He is referring to when he brushed his teeth and he had sudsy spit which totally freaked him out.  I had to keep telling him that it was normal for that to happen.  He still doesn’t believe me.  The “that is all”  was said in such a tone that I knew if I asked again he wouldn’t want to talk anymore.  So I changed tactics.

Mom: You once said that school sometimes confuses you.  What confuses you?

Chase: When my friends confuse me.

Mom:  How do they confuse you?

Chase: by reading too loud, when they drink water too loud.  Drinking water too loud means drinking too fast, right?

Mom:  I don’t know.  maybe.  So,

Chase: That’s all

Mom:  That’s all?  Which classroom do you like better? Ms S*Regular ed* or Ms M *special ed*.

Chase: Ms. M

Mom: what is better about Ms. M’s classroom

Chase:  When I play for recess there.

Mom:  What else’

Chase: I don’t know.

Mom:  What could make Ms. S room  better.

Chase: When they calm down.

Mom:  when they hurt your ears?

Chase: No, I didn’t say that I said when they calm down and then they don’t hurt my ears.

Mom: okay, What could make school better

Chase: by listening

I’m not sure what he meant by this, and in hind sight I wish I had done a little delving into this thought. 

M: okay,

Chase (he cut me off at this point and firmly stated) That’s all.  Alot is enough and that is alot

M:  What do you mean?

In hindsight I should have realized that he was reaching the limit of this conversation. 

Chase: That is enough

M: That is enough what?

Okay, really mom?  Geez, if I would have just payed attention to the tone as well as the words I think I would have had a sooner aha moment.

Chase: Those things that I talked about.

M: “ooooooh, are you done talking”

Chase: yeah

Said in a relieved tone.  Mom your finally getting it.

Mom: okay, can we finish talking tomorrow?

Chase: Yeah.

Mom: Okay, I love you.

Chase:I love you too mom.