“Menu” Math for special Needs……what is out there for basic teaching material?r

We are a homeschooled family and love to learn new ways of teaching just about anything.  Having someone with special needs and teaching them has been interesting and also challenging at times!!!! One of the uniquenesses that our son has (or as we like to call them) is Autism and ADHD.  Now he also has a few other uniqueness….and roll them all together and you never quite know what you will have when you try to teach him.

Trying to teach the simplest things can be a big hurdle and we need to look around and always find new and different ways to approach things.

Our one goal has been as he gets closer to adult age is basic life skills.  How can he function the best he can in the “real” world as he get older? When he wants to be with his friends….how can he maintain as “normal” of a life as he can?  What can we do to assist him in learning how to feel like he can fit in?

We needed to make a list of areas in life where we needed to help him fit in the best he could.  One area we thought of would be when he goes to a restaurant.  I think we take things for granted and just maybe assume that reading and understanding a menu is the “norm”.  Well in fact I found out that it is not.  So in my search around I actually found math workbooks called “menu math” and we just love them!!!

Real life math…..with real life restaurant menus, it doesn’t get better than this.  We choose places that we frequent to make this as real and normal as we could.  Chick-Fil-A, MacDonald’s etc.…. here a few samples of what we choose below.  Stay tuned as to how we apply these in our homeschooling in my next blog.

Here are a few links to some places where I was able to purchase some great “menu math”… Let me know if you find any other great resources in the comments below.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Browse/Search:menu%20math

https://www.rempub.com/menu-math

https://www.amazon.com/Menu-Math-Grades-2-3-Martin/dp/0439227259

Lynn A. C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

“Night to Shine”….. and that he did!!!!!

What an amazing night… What an amazing event! How many of you have someone with some type special needs and long for them to have a typical night like any other teenager could have such as a prom night? Tim Tebow foundation has created an event for people with special needs to have a prom like event for them to feel special for one night… and for them to “shine”!!!!

We were absolutely amazed at the organization, presentation, and variety of events put together in one evening. We arrived to find that girls were getting their hair, nails and make up done… while the boys were getting their shoes shined and their hair touched up. From there they went and met up with a buddy that they would have for the evening to keep them company. Then on to the horse and buggy carriage ride, and then to ride in a limousine! Once they departed from the limousine they were escorted to a red carpet where there were volunteers lined up on the carpet to root them on and cheer them on and take pictures. As our son said “I felt like a movie star”!!

Then they entered the gala… with white twinkling lights, beautiful tables decorated, a DJ, and I wonderful meal provided by Chick Fil A!

They could dance all night, they could be with their friends all night, they could feel as special as any other person ever felt on a prom night.

The final event… Would be to gather all the people with special needs and their buddies… They would be prayed over, and then everybody was crowned king and or queen of the prom with a beautiful crown or tiara.

No one was left behind and no one was left out during this beautiful moment. Everybody felt like they shined for this one special evening… our son came home feeling like he was worth something so special!!! This is one night he will never forget for the rest of his life!

Lynn A. C. Wilson– Resume of a Mother

Hands on Events for Autism….NO JUDGEMENT ZONE!!!

Well we are here and sitting at a museum with about 200+ Autistic kids and their families. WOW!!!!! This is an adventure to be with so many family and now friends that we have made.

img_5339img_5335img_5329

It amazes me while I sit and watch the differences in each individual who has autism or on the spectrum! My son for example has changed so much that next to most of these kids he almost seems average. There are families with kids having meltdowns of all ages. Kids wearing head phones to lighten the sounds and other kids walking in circles or having stemming issues. But all in all to watch all these levels get along and come along side of each other with NO JUDGEMENT!!!!!

img_5336img_5342img_5331

YES… I said no JUDGEMENT!!! Just the other day I had someone tell me point blank to “put him on a diet”. My son is far from needing a diet….his only thing is …is that he is tall. Then only a few days later I have someone tell him right to his face “did your head fall in a bucket of paint”. Yes he tinted the top of his hair red… and I ask you where is the crime in that?

What a JOY to be part of this awesome support group here in New Jersey!! We have been part of this group for about 5 years now. Some of the events have a charge and some are FREE like this one tonight.

Tonight our kids can run free through the hands on museum designed with sensory play stations of all kinds. From a restaurant to a climbing wall, a TV station to a doctors office, a pet shop to a nature center.

Our sons favorite is the basketball and dinosaur room.

img_5322-1img_5323img_5324

If you are not part of a support group you need to be!!!

Lynn A. C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Surf Ups… Autism Day!

Many people are misinformed and have a distorted view of Autism, disabilities, and what can be achieved! We have told our son he can do anything he wants… he might need to do it in a different way, but he can do it!

We are blessed here in New Jersey with several organizations that help people with disabilities and Autism. We have an organization called POAC, NJ Autism Warriors and organization that has come to New Jersey for this event in particular called “Walk on water”.

This day was created entirely for people with Autism and disabilities to have the freedom to feel the Atlantic Ocean surround them… to allow them to learn how to surf with a professional by their side… and to allow them to have the opportunity to know that they can do anything when they put their mind to it.

I have personally never surfed, but I have a few friends who have, and they said that there is nothing like riding a wave and the freedom it allows you to feel.

These kids were blessed one by one with riding the wave, winning an award, having a day set aside just for them and the list goes and on.

For one day they felt like they could be like everyone else. For one day they could feel proud. For one day they could feel like they were “all that”.

We were blessed to have such a special and awesome day for our family!!!

img_1480img_0676img_0651

Horses…therapy… & Autism. Finding peace!!!

We had been invited for the past couple of years to go horseback riding with one of our Autism support groups. It always seemed to fall on a day that either I had to work or we had other events going on, and honestly I didn’t think much about it. For some reason this year I felt compelled to make a point of attending. I was absolutely amazed and blessed after we went to see how beneficial it was!

This particular horse ranch is designed to assist people with any sort of disability and will teach them how to ride a horse in a safe environment. The trainers are certified and definitely know how to handle children with Autism! Our son found peace, he found joy, and I watched him actually be able to relax and be calm like I had never seen before. If you know anything about Autism in children this is very unusual!

When we arrived they gathered all the kids together and then they had them pick out their helmets for protection, before they could ride a horse. They then divided them into two groups and each group needed to find a buddy. Our son was in the first group… We started on the other side of the barn, where he was able to learn how to care and feed a horse.

Gavin was able to brush a horse named Lady, he was able to feed a horse named Terminator, he was able to talk to a horse named Finn and it was amazing to watch him and Finn together. The horse just stood there ever so kind, as Gavin just continued to talk and talk and talk to the horse. I watched a gentle and loving side of Gavin come out as he was able to connect with this beautiful animal.

In addition to brushing the horses and feed them…the kids were able to get some great lessons on the care of a horse in general. They then brought them to the next room where they lined up to have the opportunity to ride a horse.

One by one they brought them in and saddled them up with a horse based on the size of the child and the size of a horse. Once they were on the horse, two of the trainers walked them around three times in a very large enclosed barn. Gavin was able to also ride a horse as he did a gallop around the barn, which was a real treat!

I saw a different spark in Gavin’s eyes… this day was a huge blessing to him and I can truly understand why these beautiful animals are therapeutic.

We will continue with horseback riding lessons in this next home school year and Gavin also would like to volunteer there one day a week as well. Looking forward to some new adventures!

Lynn A. C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

img_1773-3

Epilepsy and Essential oils….does it really work?

I have dealt with my husband’s seizures and Epilepsy for over 30 years now.  His seizures have changed over the years from the type of seizure that he has, to the length of it and also what triggers it.  It has been a learning process for the both of us.

If you have seizures or live with someone with them….you know the drill.  You probably have struggled at some point yourself with the changes and where it takes you in life!  Let me say before I share any more….YES YES YES we live daily with everyone’s advice as to what meds, what foods, what life style, what we should and should not do etc.….. We are thankful for good friends and people who care, but when they have not lived with this….their advice can be like nails on a chalkboard!  Advice is great when you ask for it but not every time you see someone. Also, choosing a natural remedy… seems to ignite conversation in people who normally wouldn’t even talk to you. “Natural” seems to unnerve people and make them feel uneasy. In our family we tend to choose natural over Medical whenever possible. So this might be an option for you and then again possibly not if you’re not into any type of natural alternatives.

Ok enough with that…the purpose of this blog post is to share something with you about Essential oils that works for us.  This is not a medical diagnosis or a proven clinical fact…this is only what has worked for our family.

At this point in our lives….we have tried all the conventional ways and yes my husband is still on his meds.  But overall….he needs something else.  If you know Epilepsy….seizures cannot always be completely controlled and that is the case with him.

We have tried Essential Oils and we have found success!!!  Frankincense was recommended to us along with a few other oils.  What has worked and is working for us is “Oil of Oregano”.  Yes you might smell a little like a salad but who cares.  It works so well for us that we never leave home without it anymore.

When it is an “off day” for him, a long day, a rainy day, right before and even during a seizure….he/we apply it. You can use it straight on the skin (be careful since this is a hot oil), or as we have been using it ….we make up roller bottles with the oregano and a carrier oil.

Here are a few pics of what we use….I hope this helps you with either a new concept or at least to gives you an alternative to either try or just investigate for your own health.

You will see in these pictures… that you will only need four items. You would need the oil of your choice, a roller bottle, a funnel to help pour the oil into the bottle, and you would need a carrier oil. Once made… we use the roller bottle with the essential oil’s in it on his wrist, on the back of his neck and also down his spine every 2 to 4 hours or as needed.

Feel free to ask questions….if we can help we would love to share with you! We would love to get your feedback as well if you have tried essential oil’s have they been a success or a failure? Which oils have used and how do use them? Do you have a certain brand that you prefer over another and why?

Lynn A. Wilson (and hubby Graeme) – Resume of a Mother

Autism and Routine….

Routine is something hard to create and stick with in our lives….but it is a necessary thing.  I watch a You-Tube channel with “Andrea Mills”.  She talks about doing things routinely if they are important enough to you. Check out her website and channel for this topic and more.

https://www.andreamills.tv

With any type of special needs and we have two types in our family, I find as a homemaker that I need to create a way of organization for them; and not necessarily for me.  With epilepsy and Autism in our home, I find that this affects everything that we do!  For example, just leaving the house to go out for the day…we need to make a list on the back door of what we need to bring with us.  This way my husband who has Epilepsy, whether it be a good day or not, does not have to think about what to bring. Especially when it is an “off” day for him, he just looks at his list on the door.

(example list for the door)

  • travel bag
  • pills
  • water bottle
  • phone
  • phone charger

For our son has Autism.…so for his needs we have created labels in the refrigerator and also a routine of where to put things.  This way there is no frustration of where things go.  We also labeled where all of our coats go.  Again, this way it keeps things simple and organized!

We have created a “white board” system to help with all those daily questions that you find Autistic kids always asking.  They want to know what the next days meals will be 24 hours ahead of time. Our board includes 3 meals, 3 chores, 3 school events (we homeschool), and whatever the special event of the day is also.

This has proven to relieve many meltdowns, and crazy evenings in our home.  When he asks the questions that he always does by 5pm sharp, we can just refer him to the white board.

Special needs can be a struggle to the caregiver as well as the person who struggles with it.  Why not make life as routine as you can to avoid any chaos and confusion.  There will always be other issues to deal with, but when things are routine it helps out a great deal.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Being of Like Mind…Autism!

It was interesting to sit and watch the other night at a group of kids all of whom had Autism.  I learned a very valuable lesson that night!

Let me back track a little for you to get the whole picture.  Our youngest son has Autism and we belong to two different support groups.  One group especially offers a wide variety of support for parents and lots of activities for the kiddos.  This night happened to be a night for the kids, it was filled with fun, running around and freedom for them.

Freedom for them!….what I mean is that they could be who they were created to be. It was a time for them not to be judged, made fun of, no one was looking at them as if they were weird. They could speak their own language, wave their hands if they needed to, swing their legs and jump as high as they wanted. They are a unique group of people!  They have uniqueness that are their own…..and yet they don’t judge each other and they seem to relate to each other on a higher level.  They are like minded and understand each other.  Most of them have never even met before, and yet they can get along as if they were best friends forever.

What a lesson for me to learn!  Here I live in the ‘average” world without Autism.  My friends and acquaintances are “average” people.  And yet we seem to judge, talk about each other, and we are not like minded.  If we enter a room with people we haven’t met before ….we tend to look at our phones or just down right ignore each other.  Oh if we could only have the mind of someone who is Autistic….and let loose and be free!  Be free to say hello to a stranger, be free to play with someone we met for the first time, be free to jump as high as we wanted to and swing around in circles if we felt like it.

I am so glad that we have a place that allows our son to be free!  A place for us to be with other parents who we can relate to!  A place for him to be able to feel like and where he can say…..“I can just be me”.  God has given him a uniqueness called Autism…he is not strange or weird just different.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Amish Homemade remedies…and Natural finds.

I have always leaned on the side of natural meds.  And the more and more I learn about natural ways I enjoy practicing using them more often!

My family and I have not been on any form of antibiotics for over 25 years now….people look at us strange when we say this.  We use a natural one made from a plant and it works.  We have not suffered side effects from it and it works even better for us.  With having Autism and Epilepsy in our family ……I have found that natural as help us way more than regular prescribed medication.

Now I DO NOT claim to be a doctor or a medical professional.  I am just a mom who practices being a “wise woman” who builds her house with the Lord’s guidance.  We use natural plant remedies, essential oils, chiropractic applications and I have recently found some GREAT finds from our Amish community too …. all natural plant based items.

A few months ago…my girlfriends and I went for the day out to PA for a road trip.  We take this trip about 4 times a year for the day from NJ. We stopped at one of my favorite shops for some homemade Amish pies and breads now also sells natural remedies.  I picked up a few things along with two of my friends and we tried it for a month and ….WOW, we were hooked!  So a month later when I went back out to PA with my hubby, I was given a list by my friends to buy these same items and anything else they had.

I love learning and learning about things that can help my family is even better!  I will be taking an on-line training class in the spring for essential oils, so that I can learn even more.  As I learn things and experience the pros and cons of natural remedies ….I will share this with you!

Share with me what natural remedies you have used and how they have worked for you. I would love to hear from you and exchange ideas.  Comment below or email me!  Find me on Facebook and Instagram too for more pics.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother