Autism is described by Mick, a canine (dog) brother. Red, Mom (Irene) and friends also share their insights about autism, ADHD and living outside the neurotypical box.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Polishing Our Schedule Around Band
Yo! Mick here. This was me after our Saturday Band Camp this weekend. Don’t I look adorable when I’m falling asleep on the couch?
The first month back to school has past and Red and I are still making adjustments to our schedules. Band seems to rule as well as rock!
Although we love band, it is almost a full time career. On Tuesday and Thursday nights Red and I return to school at 5:45pm to practice marching drills and music until 8:45. We play for all of the home games and we have several competitions this year.
I think I mentioned before that I play the French horn and Red plays the baritone. Mum helps out as she can. She helped with getting the uniforms hemmed and organized, not to mention organizing us. Band has become a family activity. I had no idea how much goes into getting the band up and marching on the field.
Well, we’re starting to find our footing (LOL get it?) with getting our homework completed around the band schedule. Although there are some competitions coming up that may require some additional polishing of the schedule (I crack myself up).
Next we need to add in some chores. We’ve been relying on Mum for quite a bit but she’s giving us the heads up that changes are in order. We’re bigger, older and more mature and therefore need to be pitching in more.
That’s cool. More responsibility usually means we are able to do more independently too.
For example, this Saturday Mum took us to another Band Camp practice and gave us money so we could walk over to a fast food restaurant with some of the other band kids instead of packing a lunch. It was great to hang with our friends.
We’re still adjusting to our schedules but we sure do like band so fitting our less favorite things around it just makes sense. Even if we’re wiped out, we make sure to take care of our responsibilities. Band is so worth the effort!
I give the boys plenty of heads up with an explanation when I'm planning changes. This allows Red and Mick to work out in their minds the rationale and appropriate responses and tends to make the transition smoother.
This is especially helpful to kids on the autism spectrum.
Band is important to the boys and is a strong motivator. Although I recently learned from a woman on the autism spectrum that it is cruel to withhold a preferred activity, such as band, it hasn't been an issue. Red is very self motivated.
Further, the band director stresses to the students that they must maintain good grades and demonstrate responsibility in order to be in band. I don't have to be the bad guy or the enforcer - I get to be a team player and occasionally make "suggestions".