Rewind several years and we find our son seriously struggling at school. His reading development has flatlined. First impact of dyslexia but also the Governments forced phonics teaching approach doesn’t help. He is increasingly alone in the playground. In lessons he struggles to stay still and concentrate. He’s become clumsy and his fine motor skills have deserted him.
We had a few warning signings at nursery but these we largely missed. In fact at nursery he was ahead of all his age development targets. He was a character who was happy to be the centre of attention. He had loads of friends and the little girls would fight over who was going to marry him. Within the course of a few months this all changed.
WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF ASPERGERS, DYSPRAXIA AND DYSLEXIA.
As we started the process of getting a diagnosis everything we tried failed to work. It felt like we were working in the dark. Any type of win would really boast everyone’s confidence. Step in LEGO.
On the recommendation of a health professional it was agreed with school that we try a teaching programme based on those magic little toy blocks. Over the course of a few months school would incorporate a number of 1 hour LEGO sessions into each week. At home we would take every opportunity to encourage our son to play with his LEGO in a structured way. The whole approach was heavily influenced by the increasing use of LEGO-BASED THERAPY in schools and autistic research. The process worked and delivered clear results.
- The repeated process of picking up small and differing shaped blocks started to improve his finger control.
- Incorporating role play and story telling into model building helped him develop his imagination.
- In the school sessions increasingly other kids were brought into the programme. This really helped his team working and willingness to share. Plus it gave kids a chance to see a different side of our son.
- Increasingly complex designs helped with improving concentration levels.
- As every small milestone reached gained a certificate. Son could see progress. This really helped his confidence.
So in an increasingly alien world for our son and his struggling parents those little building blocks brought our first real ray of hope. They really do work.
Because learning works best when it’s fun.