Different things matter to different people, share those issues that matter most to you and awareness raise to get other people interested and aware!!
A child doesn’t have to be on the Autistic Spectrum to be difficult to buy for, however when they’re not able to verbalise what they’d like to have as a new present, or often not willing to accept new things into their lives or a change of activity into their routine without it turning into a melt down it makes it a massive challenge for everyone at times like Christmas and Birthdays.
As we seemed to hit gold with Theo this birthday I thought I’d share a review of his new found favourite educational toy and all the benefit’s we’ve found to go along with it!
Here I introduce to you the LeapReader made by LeapFrog,
- Access to the internet is required!
The LeapReader is an audio pen that allows the child to interact with books, maps and activity sets to aid in developing skills such as listening, reading and writing. Discovering through stories and games with favourite characters such as Disney, Cbeebies, Nickelodeon to name a few in area’s such as Mathematics, Social Studies, Science in a fun and hidden way!
To get started you charge the pen, you are provided with a USB connection lead, connect to an internet accessible computer, and follow the instructions to install LeapFrog Connect. This tool gives you easy access to the application store where you can find the download resources for the books that you buy. Connect also gives you a link to the Learning Path which gives you a history of your child’s usage of the LeapReader, details which books are most commonly read, activities most commonly used and suggest new material that your child may be interested in!
Once you’ve downloaded the audio software for the products that you’ve purchased it’s all go! Jump from book to book, page to page, map back to book, if it’s installed it’ll automatically recognise the item and take you on that learning adventure. So the child can just pick it up and play!
The positives that we’ve found with Theo
- Bigger interest in books
- More word repetition (maybe doesn’t know how to use the word in sense but has increased his vocabulary!)
- Improved fine motor skills
- Improved concentration time on specific subjects
- Introduced new topics of interest
- Improved social sharing to include others to read with him
I admit that the books and accessories to go with the LeapReader can be quite expensive however I’ve found that on www.amazon.co.uk you can buy lots cheaper! You just have to be very careful that you’re buying for the LeapReader and NOT the LeapTag system.
When I was working as a Youth Worker in Community Learning and Development for Dumfries and Galloway Council I had to give a presentation to both young people and other service providers to show what had inspired me into my post and what my beliefs were for healthy communities to work together without discrimination.
Growing up myself I faced a lot of issues and wasn’t able to find the support that I craved from the right people. When I found the support from the most unlikely place ever my goal for my career was to make sure that no young person ever thought that they were not “The kid who wouldn’t amount to much” and that by not listening to the abuse and discrimination they could be anything they wanted to be as there are other sources of support to empower them too. Yes … They could be “The one who landed the Rock Stars job”.
I detest discrimination, each off my children have faced it because of their different health issues. Never to be one for being backwards at coming forwards telling anyone of any age, status, background or social status … I advise them of their faults and direct them to “Never think that they’re all that special as not even Google has all the right answers” and that their air that they’re breathing costs exactly the same as everyone else’s.
Respect is an amazing thing when you’ve earned it. it’s the biggest punchline ever when people think that the world owes them it!!
For months since meeting a (newish) best friend after randomly on the walkway at silly o’clock in the morning I’ve started going to Irene’s Karaoke at the club on a Tuesday night for a little bit of me time. My one night a week respite from all the things that are boiling my brain at home (or away) where I get to have a few drinks and have time with new found friends whilst murdering … sorry … “singing” away with a few tunes and letting my hair down!! (murdering can sometimes be a more apt description haha!!)
I hadn’t gone to any of her nights last week as I’d been bedridden with the flu the majority of the week, tonight Irene stood and told me how much I was missed and how she and all of her regulars (and there’s a fair few of them!) were now classing me as part of their “Karaoke Family”.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve not moved down here and not made any friends but … I genuinely miss the friends and family that were in my life day in day out though, week in week out and so on, that were up the road that I never see or hear from unless I’m either in Dumfries or have a reason for them or myself to get in touch for special events or what have you these days. I’ve never really had that with anyone down here tho, all of my mates have been made through Stuart or from working in the bar where they knew me from pulling their pints (not that that’s a bad thing in any which way… only I found this friend myself 🙂 !) … I’ve friends that I could turn too about anything at any time … but they’re not as involved as the one that were up the road if you get what I mean?!
Well Irene, Karlos and Amie (Irene’s partner and daughter) have completely turned that around. They’re in touch with me as much as I am them, we’re catching up on a regular basis. If it wasn’t for the Karaoke night’s they’d be in touch or meeting up anyway, we invite each other on nights out (or nights in!), they’ve the same nonjudgmental attitude as I have where absolutely nothing has to be said diplomatically (thank goodness!) …. it’s just said as it is, advice and support is there 24/7/365.
Absolute breath of fresh air! When she told me (under no pretense) tonight that I was part of the “Karaoke Family” and was missed by everyone when I wasn’t turning up it meant so much to me, really hit home that our friendship was unconditional and that the regulars that came in that I was classing as friends were absolutely there too! Nice to know that my friendship to her meant as much to her as hers does to me!!
As you’ll be able to tell … I’ve had a brilliant night … the ones with brilliant friends always are!!
While Stuart watched the football and Theo was watching Garfield in his bedroom this afternoon, I decided that I’d make use of the TV and watch Les Miserables. About 15 minutes after the film started I had Theo come cuddle up with me on the sofa humming along with the music! Where he knows it from I have no idea! This is the first time I have had the chance to watch it!
I’m tickled I have to say. Normally he has to watch every thing on rewind if he’s going to concentrate on it. I may have to try him with more musicals if this is the outcome! 🙂