If he is told 'no' to something, his eyebrows furrow, shoulders sag and his chin falls to his chest. This type of reaction is common, I know, but for Ben it is not. He used to smirk and snap his fingers and say "Oh Man!" in a Swiper the Fox type of reaction and then go on about his day. A change is a change, however, and I know something bigger is bothering him.
We have been making special efforts around home to make sure Ben feels remembered. He and his dad went on a 'boys only' overnight trip a couple of weeks ago. Then last Saturday Ben's Boy Scout Den held their annual Pinewood Derby so we all made room in our schedule to attend.
Ben's car is the police car on top. It looked great, but lost both times in the double elimination races. Surprisingly he didn't get upset about the loses because it was such a fun time. This was his first year and he is already talking about next year's design! The photo on the far right makes me squeal with delight . . . . . saying the Boy Scout Promise and Law.
Yesterday, Valentines Day, I went up to school to attend the
candy fests classroom parties. The kids passed out their cards and then had a couple of minutes to sort through the loot. Then the whole class participated in some Minute to Win It games. It was fun to see Ben interact with his friends and to watch them all enjoy some non-instruction class time.
I do need to take a moment and point something out about the placement of Ben's desk. I received a phone call last week from his teacher with concerns about Ben's inability to stay "on task" and "follow instruction". He is not acting out or being disruptive, but everything that moves or makes a sound seems to distract HIM. The teacher's solution was to move Ben's desk away from the group (see how everyone else's desk is connected to or across from another student?) and she calls it "Ben Island". He is situated so that he faces out and away from the rest of the class.
This makes me sad. It singles Ben for something he is having a tough time with. I know we need to talk with the school counselor or our pediatrician about some tools to help him focus, but I also feel like Ben should be allowed to learn in his own way and not be penalized.
The reality is we need to focus on Ben and his strengths. (he is great at math, is reading above level and loves science) Should he be forced to conform to the classroom standards and risk feeling like he doesn't belong? Ack. Obviously we have a lot of thinking and praying to do in this area.
Homeschooling? I know it is quite the large elephant to through into the mix, but it is something I have always said I would be willing to entertain for the right circumstances. With Ellie and all the class time she misses for her T1D and now Ben and his distractions, maybe these are the circumstances. I don't know. Maybe it would only be for a year or two? I DO know I want the best fro my kiddos and if it takes moving out of my comfort zone and taking a risk by teaching them at home then I will do it. I think. Maybe. Yes! Yes, I will . . . . consider it.
I just want my fun-loving, silly Ben boy back.