Wednesday, August 7, 2013

5 Days of.... Blog Hop Day #3 Campschooling TOS CREW Blog Hop #hsmommas #camping #mobsociety

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Hello Again,
I am back with day 3 of campschooling as we continue to sail along on the TOS Crew 5 Days Of.... blog Hop!  Today we are going to talk about the aspect of camping and how it helps children with special needs.
My 2 youngest sons have Asperger's Syndrome and OCD and the youngest suffers from anxiety issues as well. Since we started camping 4 years ago on a regular basis the boys began to overcome some of their deficiencies. When we began homeschooling they really started to blossom and when you add the two together, camping and homeschooling they are completely different boys. Up at camp they are so much more calmer, they get along so much better, I think this is in part to no outside influences of the couple friends they do have and no video games and also they do not have the ability to just go to their room and hide from the world. Camping in a 33 ft camper with several people forces them to interact with others and compromise on activities that everyone has to do.
The other important aspect has been that they have begun to feel more comfortable seeking out others for help or just to chat. This has been so refreshing especially with my youngest, Taylor. He is more of a shy quiet type and wants everyone to think, talk and do for him because it is so much easier. Since homeschooling he has gotten a little bit better but after camping this year started he has blossomed so much more than I could have imagined. Recently we went to a restaurant near camp and there was a clown making balloons characters, he wanted one and went to go in the other room all by himself. This in itself was huge but it is what happened next that truly amazed me. He sat at the table after his creation was made and kept saying how he would like to learn how to do that, the next thing you know he is not at the table and we thought he had gone to use the restroom. All of the sudden we heard him from the next room, he had gone to the clown and asked her to show him step by step how to make a balloon creation. This picture shows him deeply focused learning to make a sword.
 That was all it took, he was hooked. The next day we looked high and low and landed at hobby lobby for twister ballooons and a pump. He spent the whole day learning how to make several animals courtesy of youtube. Later that night was karaoke at The Dome. He made himself a Tip jar and set up a table to make animals for all the kids. To see him beam with pride as the children were amazed at his abilities was something I cannot describe into words. It simply melted my heart. He only made a quarter but he was so proud of himself.  Later that evening the park manager came up to him to tell him what a good job he was doing and she said she had a book on ballooon characters in her car, we asked if we could borrow it to make copies and she told him he could keep it. He smiled ear to ear.
A couple years  ago he would not have even tried to accomplish such a thing as he would have been afraid of the balloons popping and he most certainly would not have put on a "show" for a crowd. He even sat by me at the craft show to sell his creations.
They laugh so much more now too, they used to be serious all the time and now they find the humor in good in most that they do.
They enjoy hanging out at the campfire with friends. 

                                    They can explore their hobbies with more room to room than we have back home in the city. Taylor loves doing Archery at camp and they both love using their airsoft guns up here as well.

                                   We celebrated Alyx's Birthday up at camp the last few Summer's each year we add more and more friends who come to celebrate with us. It is like a second family to us. Being that this is a private campground, you tend to make friends that you see each time you come. We all keep in touch over the Winter and coordinate our schedules so we can be at camp at the same time.

  Alyx has really blossomed socially this year, he has made friends at camp and has really shown an interest to act on his passion for cars and we are hoping this winter he can take a class at the local community college for automotive tech or something along those lines. He has so much more confidence now and it certainly shows.
     He has also shown interest in volunteering at camp with the activities department and maybe next year maybe getting hired part time for the summer while we are at camp. He shows initiative to help out fellow campers in need of help. Like carrying their groceries from their car to their campers, helping to do things that are hard for older campers like the cranks for the jacks and all the lines that need to be connected to set up. He is also ready with all his tools in hand if someone has a job that they need help with.

It makes me so proud and thankful to see my kids enjoying the time we have up here and making good use of their time.
I think it has something to do with the water flowing down the lake or the mere serenity of the atmosphere up here that makes them calm and able to accomplish so much while we are up here. I know I feel it as well. Without the added stress of "life" at home I feel better physically and mentally. I hope by the end of the Summer I will have more praise reports to write about. I am hopeful that the boys continue to blossom.

  Be sure to click the banner below to find all of the TOS Crew's 5 days of.... Blog Hop posts. Be sure to join us tomorrow for some more campschooling fun.

Summer Blog Hop

1 thoughts shared:

fallenangel said...

this post was very inspiring to me! i, too, have an Aspie that would rather have others talk/do for him - unless he's rambling on about buses, of course. i've wanted to start making camping a regular thing, but we don't have transportation to do that type of thing - just bicycles and packing a tent and bedding and food/cookware isn't exactly bike-friendly. i do notice that being out in nature has a calming effect, though, and we try to hike and bike as often as possible. i'm looking forward to the day when my kiddo can find a hobby or talent that will make him more social and more confident - but he gives up so easily if he can't get things right on the first few tries. again, your post gives me hope! thanks so much for sharing it all!