Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Pens, Pencils, Markers

Autism touched our lives when Little Monkey was 18 months old. I noticed that he wouldn't look anyone in the eyes, would spin objects while humming, would only eat foods that had a bread around it, and freaked when his hands were wet, sticky or dirty.

At that time he wasn't even uttering a word. Words didn't come to him until the age of three and now there's no stopping him. He loves to ask the same question over and over and over. Even if you have already answered him. In fact, the other day I asked him to stop asking questions so I could explain something to him and he said "I'm not asking questions, I'm talking"

When there are too many people around him and the voices are loud he tends to get irritated rather quickly and starts to hum and will leave the room and shut the door to get away. He doesn't hug he leans in so you can hug him. And If toys are not played with the way they were intended he gets very upset.

He will be 5 in two days and we are having some issues that are and will effect him in school. He will not draw, paint, or color. When we force the issue he only gets angry. It's the same way at school. The teachers try to get him to do something but just won't and he takes his hand back quickly when made to touch a pen, pencil, paint brush, crayon or marker.

He will be in Kindergarten Readiness next year but even with all the help he will recieve I think he's going to have trouble with writing. I have tried incorporating the Glow Station by Crayola because he likes lights. It worked for a while and now he cringes when I turn it on.

I'd like you guys to share some ideas on how to get him to pick up a writing aperatus without cringing or getting angry. Next week I will post your ideas  on my blog. I'm sure a lot of other parents are dealing with the same thing and need all the advice they can get.

With Autism, you have trial and error to get your child to feel comfortable achieving a goal. It's a lot different than a typical child and we as parents of these special needs kids learn to think outside the box. These ideas and outside the box thinking can also help a typical child too. So keep those ideas coming!


  1. Unfortunately I don't know. I wish I could help!!
    The pics you posted are soooo precious - they caught my eye immediately when I was going through my reading list :)
    Lovely big, blue eyes!

  2. You could try those crayola beginnings for the bathtub. They are fat and round rather than the shape of a pencil/marker/crayon.

  3. Anonymous3:12 AM

    I have a 9 yob with autism, and we found a few things that were helpful: pencil grips that have odd textures to fill tactile sensory input needs, pencils that were bendy or squishy or made noise (they were more interesting than regular pencils and didn't scream "writing" as much as they did "touch me, I'm cool!") and special grips that align the hand properly and lessen the tightness the child has to have in his hand. We also used paper with raised lines, so he could feel the lines instead of just seeing them. It's hit and miss what works with each child, and we had more misses than hits for a while there, but now he's showing appropriate writing skills, so it definitely does get easier. Good luck!

  4. Rachel C11:45 PM

    I would just try lots of different textures/writing utensils and see if there's something that appeals to him. Ex: he could practice letters with his finger in sand, rice, shaving cream, pudding, on sandpaper, with chalk, with pens (like mom or dad), highlighters, etc.
    Once you find a couple of things that he enjoys, I would just give him 2 choices at a time. Ex: "We are going to practice writing your name today. Would you like to use shaving cream on the bathtub wall, or would you like to use a marker on a dry erase board?"
    Make him do it, but make him WANT to do it! It may take some time in the beginning, but hopefully you will find something that works for you both. :)


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