ADHD and Homeschool…an update from the NUThouse

Dear wonderful readers of a Mom’s View,

I WISH I could tell you that homeschool (which we started last winter in order to end the constant frustration and failure J. was experiencing in our local elementary school) is going swimmingly for me and my little ADHD/ODD/SPD/PDD/FAS bundle of love, but the truth of the matter is that some days it is…and some days it isn’t.

Monday was a “going swimmingly” day. We got home from his OT session at9:30 and J. and I sat down at the table, he wrote in his journal, did math practice, we worked on the calendar, and then we read 2 chapters of a Magic Tree House book. Bam! All done in an hour and a half! He was pleasant, I was pleasant, everything went well.

Tuesday was a hmm…day. We’re investigating neurofeedback for J. and the neurofeedback guy came to our house to do a mini-session and explain how it all worked, then before you know it 12:00 rolled around and we had to go out and do errands and experience the world. Not good, not bad. Sometimes you skip a day.

Wednesday J. was at my mom’s where he did everything I sent with him. Happy day for him and mom (our wonderful substitute teacher!).

And then there was TODAY. Thursday. A bad, bad, stinky day in this homeschool house. J. and I sat down to do some schoolwork…and he wouldn’t do it. Messed up on purpose. Dawdled, scowled, and called me names. Was generally unpleasant. And so I did what school teachers around the country are not allowed to do, but which I’m sure they want to do all the time: I said (not out loud) screw it, then.

What I said out loud was this: If you don’t do what I ask, you may not watch that TV show on the moon we were talking about, and I will not take you to the store to buy that toy you’ve been saving up money for.

And he said: FINE. And he went outside to bang nails. Which, if he were in college instead of homeschool, would be his major.

So, if you’re doing the math it means he had 2 academic days this week, 2 not so much, and we’ll have to see what Friday will bring. BUT if you also saw what he had done in regular school before we pulled him, you’d know that what he got done in those 2 days was about twice what he would have done in a week at school – not that they didn’t TRY – but he really, really, really needs that 1-1 in order to accomplish anything.

(The happy news is that the homeschooling of his 12 year old brother is going GREAT! Makes me happy, really. See – I’m not completely bad at this!)

What does this all mean? Good question. Obviously, we’re still floundering. He’s waaaaaaay behind his peers, still. But he’s also developmentally delayed and has a low IQ and so that’s to be expected, and the happy news is that he doesn’t spend all day being frustrated, treated like a leper, and made to feel dumb.

Do I think I’m doing a great job? No. Not really. I definitely think other folks could do better – but those folks aren’t in our local public school system. I found a school about an hour away that would be perfect for him…except that it’s an hour away. And for a brief moment last week I thought about opening my own school…

…and I’m still thinking about it.

I mentioned it to J. and he said we could all 3 go together, and I could be the principal because I am the bossiest person he knows!

So – that’s the update. Not really a happy ending. Not an ending at all! Stay tuned for more…

(picture from flickr user Flyinace2000)

Adrienne Ehlert Bashista is the co-editor of and contributor to Easy to Love but Hard to Raise: Real Parents, Challenging Kids, True Stories, and is also the author of two picture books about Russian adoption. She’s had stories, essays, and articles published in a variety of journals, both print and on-line. She is the owner of DRT Press. She was a school librarian for many years before giving it up to devote more time to the rest of her life. She chronicles her adventures raising her son, recently diagnosed with FASD in her blog, A Square Peg, a Round Hole. She also writes for the blog for Easy to Love but Hard to Raise and her writing/speaking website is adriennebashista.net. She lives in central North Carolina with her husband, two sons, two dogs, 21 chickens, and a lot of bees.

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adhd and homeschooling, adhd and school, Adrienne Bashista, ODD ·

About the author

Adrienne Ehlert Bashista is the co-editor of and contributor to Easy to Love but Hard to Raise: Real Parents, Challenging Kids, True Stories, and is also the author of two picture books about Russian adoption. She’s had stories, essays, and articles published in a variety of journals, both print and on-line. She is the owner of DRT Press. She was a school librarian for many years before giving it up to devote more time to the rest of her life. She chronicles her adventures raising her son, recently diagnosed with FASD in her blog, A Square Peg, a Round Hole. She also writes for the blog for Easy to Love but Hard to Raise and her writing/speaking website is adriennebashista.net. She lives in central North Carolina with her husband, two sons, two dogs, 21 chickens, and a lot of bees.
The "ADHD Mommas" are not medical or mental health professionals, nor an ADHD coach. Any opinions shared here are just that, opinions. I, and the other "ADHD Mommas," are sharing our experiences with our own ADHD children. Please do not re-post or publish any content or photos without a link back to {a mom's view of ADHD}. Have the courtesy to give credit where credit is due. Copyright protected. All rights reserved.

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