The reason I have so much trouble writing about my homeschooling journey is that not everything worked. But I know if I don’t start talking about it, I’m not going to help people do it better than I did.
The biggest issue was not my kids. It was me. I made a lot of decisions I thought were for the kids but they were really for me. Because I have autism and life is really, really difficult for me. I understand autism a lot better now than I did when I started homeschooling twelve years ago. Knowing about my own autism has shed the most light on how I should have done things differently for my autistic kids.
Also, my kids have a lot of insight about how we should have done it differently. Yep. They have opinions. Who could have seen that coming?
I want to share with you the research that’s not filtering to the public but is really important to understand as a homeschooler with autism. For example, the biggest factor in how emotionally adjusted an autistic kid is as an adult: the mother’s stress levels during childhood. And literally the ONLY way people have been able to improve executive function with any scientific validity is with a service dog or running intervals. (Try both! Kids and adults! I do intervals with my dog and it sucks! I hate it.)
Also, colleges expectations are adapting very quickly. For example, kids do not need to know how to take notes. You can sign up to have a notetaker at nearly any college. And kids don’t need to write by hand. Colleges just don’t care. And neither do employers. We don’t even sign our names to documents anymore. [Oh god. Such a good spot here for a paid link. I was literally born to do paid links, I just have no ability to deal with the customer service portion of the exchange.]
Also, kids who were diagnosed very young are just now old enough to attend college, which means they are guinea pigs for slews of studies. We have fascinating data about what makes a mentally healthy autistic college kid. Biggest finding in 2022? Telling a kid their diagnosis early in elementary school. Or earlier, if you can. Just don’t put it off.
You know who putting it off helps? The parents. Which is what I was talking about — so much of what I did I thought I was helping my kids and I was helping myself. Also, I wasn’t even helping myself. But we know really good ways to help autistic parents. And homeschooling parents have a lot more flexibility which means a lot more ability to help ourselves, if we know the best ways to do it.
So sign up for the group. We’ll talk about what works for autism and homeschooling once a week for ten weeks. The price is $150. We will create a few meeting times to accommodate time zones. Also, you’ll get access to a general weekly session about autism which I wrote about here. But you should not click on that. It’s such bad online selling to put a link to go somewhere else right before I tell you to buy. Do this link:
Sign up by this weekend or you will miss everything and it will be sad for you.
If you’ve already signed up for the general sessions and you want to add the homeschooling group, it’s $50.
If you need to pay a reduced rate, send me an email. I have empathy. Not in a usual way, but in an autistic way, and that’s probably all you need to get a discount.