Tuesday, April 27, 2010

toy story IV: woody retires to the life of a repairman

It's been said that people with Fragile X tend to learn best when allowed to observe and listen on their own terms, in a non-threatening environment. So one of the best ways to influence behavior is to just talk and sometimes model even when appears that they aren't listening. I think this is why video modeling works so well -- FXSers are incredibly strong visual learners, but need it to be presented with minimal invasion to their personal space and with the least amount of eye contact as possible required.

So when I foolishly attempted to play a matching game with Punkin after dinner and he held out for one whole turn, I gave up and let him dump out all three kinds of Legos/Duplos/Mega Blocks and MIX THEM UP while I pulled out the dress-up clothes and started saying ridiculous things like, "Oh, I love this tool belt and this orange construction worker vest. I think I will wear them." (Yes, I went there. This is why I need a friendly neighbor -- to come take photos of me so I can embarass myself on the internet.)

He completely ignored me for a solid eight minutes and then, BAM! It clicked. He wanted to wear the orange vest and the safety goggles. Then he spotted his Woody costume and, well, the photos speak for themselves.

For whatever reason, as soon as he was dressed, he insisted on going to the car. I initially thought he wanted to go trick-or-treating since he wore Woody for Halloween. But he didn't ask for his candy bucket, so we headed to Oma and Opa's house to show off some sweet style.

It's a good thing we got there when we did, too, because Opa needed some help "fixing" (aka: rebuilding) an old Allis Chalmers.
The kid knows a wrench from a hammer AND that a wrench tightens a bolt. And you thought Handy Manny was mindless entertainment!
What?! You've never seen a cowboy who plays first base for the Cubs and moonlights as a small engine repairman?


Umma said...

Eight minutes? I guess I need to be more determined, I give up too quickly :-)

It is amazing how much you can influence them with just talking and letting them just absorb it passively, isn't it? This is one concept that I just can't seem to get the school to understand.

the other lion said...

Umma, eight may be a tad of an exaggeration, but I'd say it was at least five. I sat and talked to myself for quite a while. And I cleaned up the game and checked Facebook on my phone and I watched him make the spinny gears thing light up. It took a while.

Jennie said...

Here I am, gibbering about his cuteness again. Awesome kid!