One thing I've learned with kids is to play to their strengths. I will stretch my kids to try new things but I always make sure to keep them engaged in something they love and excel at. My dd was the shyest, least athletic girl you could ever meet in elementary school. Then in grade 9 she had to take personal fitness. She was absolutely dreading it and had no self confidence. I must have hear how much she was dreading it every day for the summer before.
Well.. guess who loved it so much that she's taken every fitness course the high school offers? At 17 she is as fit and strong as any teenager I've ever met. She's confident, knows exactly who she is, and is planning to become a police officer. . She's amazing. This is the girl who was so shy and awkward in the 8th grade that she pretended to forget her gym clothes every day and almost failed the class.
Kids. They will surprise you. They will blossom under the right conditions and find their niche. They can overcome just about anything with unwavering support and love. One day you will look back and say "Remember when we were so worried about ds?"
Rock on nerd family! If you lived around here we'd all be friends.
Tushnurse, I think we will do some research/reading on other "different" people too. That's a great idea. I don't want him to be in the "popular" crowd. I just want him to be happy and have healthy self esteem.
I am right there with you. Given you are a self proclaimed Geek Family, and you are all comfortable with that will go a long way. You just have to find interests with similar folks for him to participate in. I know it's hard, and we want our kids to fit in, and be happy. However, some activities, my kid will never fit in, like sports. He just didn't get that team mentality, and they never fully accepted him, so sports went to the wayside. Sports he does/did do that he loved, Cross Country, and golf. More an individual thing, working to improve against yourself.
Just keep looking for clubs that will fit his groove, and find his passion. Robotics is awesome, and if it isn't a club at your schools, find out how to start one. Many companies like Boeing, Monsanto, and Engineering Universities often fund a school to get started.
Please talk to him about coming to you IF something like that ever happens again. He needs to know that if he felt that threatened to pick up a brick, he was scared. It is assault and the league needs to know to keep an eye on those kids. I hope this is an isolated incident. It needs to be.
Anyway, both kids were trying to chicken out before class and I think the fact that I was doing it too was one of the things that kept them going.
BR joined karate in 2007 with Dd who was 6. The deal was, Dd would stay in it if BR joined.
Since then BR has earned her black belt, had her own dojo, and then left that school and joined a now one that works with special needs kids where she was knocked back down the the beginning, so she'll have to get back to black belt. You never know what you're going to love
The people you do your life with shape the life you live
Here are a few things that I've found have worked. You have to stop and take the time to help him notice social cues and situations. My kids constantly interrupt my conversations that I am having with another student/adult...so I have to stop, look at the interrupter and ask them, "Do you see what is happening here?" and they have to notice and describe the social situation. They then have to articulate that they need to wait their turn. Eventually I can signal/cue this with a hand gesture or a look...but the first few times they have to go through the practice of recognition. Also, I have several students that don't recognize facial cues...so, if I get angry with a student who I know has this difficulty, I will stop and ask that student to look at my face and I will him/her that this is my angry face...because they really do not recognize those cues or how to properly react to them...and so we work on that process. I do this for everything ("This is my proud face." "This is my irritated face." "This is my, 'I would like you to be quiet' face." "This is my 'wait your turn' face.") And then you have to get the kiddo to recognize those faces and cues with other people and peers so they react properly. It is TIME CONSUMING!!! Practice makes perfect, though. Feel free to PM me about any specifics and I'll let you know what I've tried with kids I've worked with.