Monday’s Tutoring Memories

Putting my arms in the air and cheering loudly takes me completely out of my comfort zone!

Yet, one of the most loveable lads I have ever worked with taught me to do this with ease.

He has ASD (autistic spectrum disorder). When we first met, he was non- verbal. He clearly didn’t want me there. He screwed his self into a corner and screamed. Hitting out every time his mum tried to go near him to coax him into coming to see the games I had with me.

Over the weeks this completely changed. As I knocked on the door, I would hear, “Miss Dawn, Miss Dawn” (he’s the only one that calls me that, everyone else just calls me Dawn).

Then he would go running of to get his younger brother to come to the door as well.

To say he appeared happy to see me was an understatement.

He loves colouring and Paw Patrol, so often part of the lesson would involve colouring a picture which had different questions in each part of it. Once the question was answered you could colour that part of the picture. He would indicate that I had to colour an identical one as well.

We also played a fishing (pairs game) that he loved. This would involve matching a corresponding question and answer.

It always worked out that I would lose.

This would result in him climbing onto the table, waving his arms in the air, and cheering loudly.

He would then indicate that I had to join in. Put my arms in the air and cheer just as loudly,

leaving my comfort zone far behind.

The neighbours must have wondered what on earth we were up to. Because he was putting so much enthusiasm into it, it would feel awkward not doing so. I don’t think anyone I have ever worked with has ever made me feel so at ease.

He would then jump down, run around to myside of the table, and give me a big hug.

We would then start the next game and the same routine would repeat itself.

One of the many reasons I love this business.

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