I was totally failing at keeping my ASD seven year old in the room long enough to even hear the words we were trying to learn let alone attempt to spell them. It wasn’t that he wasn’t interested in the lesson. He was, he couldn’t wait for his turn to write on the board and squealed with excitement every time he got a word right first go. It was just that he was equally interested in jumping on the trampoline, skipping, swirling the skipping rope, trying to catch the dancing spot of light on the wall, discovering what was causing the dancing spot of light on the wall, explaining the properties of reflective material, listing the occupations in which the wearing of clothes made out of reflective material was a requirement………..and it was really starting to tick the girls off.
The lesson was taking too long and I was about to cut my losses, send him off in search of a butterfly or something and hope the fallout later when he realized I had gone on and schooled the girls without him wouldn’t be catastrophic. Then inspiration struck. I realised that one of the word families we were working on was the `ood` family. Yay I know that family, those weird squishy, tentacle faced, hive brained singing dudes, I know them and better than that Eli does too. At the moment Eli’s absolute top of the list special interest is Doctor Who followed closely by Minecraft and Gymnastics. Basically he’s in his element killing Creepers whilst wearing Eleven’s skin and standing on his head. If that last statement makes no sense to you then you need to hand your nerd licence back in, it’s been revoked. Anyhooo I quickly scribbled up an Ood on the whiteboard and the change in Eli was instantaneous. Without being asked and with overflowing enthusiasm he began to write all the words he could think of with ood in them. Those staring red eyes were like some kind of attention drug and Eli was hooked.
Mr Ood has not been allowed to leave our board all week. Instead he stays, demanding the best out of his pupils and has now become a crucial part of each spelling lesson coming up with ingenious if not childish sentences containing the word on our list. Now I’m racking my brain to think of other ways to let the Doctor into our lessons.