Me and my kiddo

Me and my kiddo

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

GTD for Kids: Part II

I first wrote about GTD for Kids about three and half years ago and we've done lots of tinkering in that time!  We've had picture schedules / calendars, simple lists, and lots of little tweaks.  The file box is forgotten, for now, but we've gradually honed a weekly list that includes all my son's various actions and... it's now his to manage!  That's the biggest advance now, he manages his own todo list and tweaks it as he finds necessary.  At ten, he's also quite willing to use computer tools to change it into a format that appeals to him.  I was impressed when he used a mind map tool to change his print list into this:

It's got everything from cleaning his room and showering to school work and various activities with Mom and Dad.  He's been using this for about a month successfully.  He loves that he prints it himself each week and makes his choices each night with the time frame of the full week in mind.

We've got two things that we want to implement soon to give him a more complete, effective system- an inbox and a calendar.  My husband is going to set up a calendar for my son so that I can still keep it on my computer, but it will sync to his computer and he can look at that each week when deciding how to budget time.  It's also something he could print independently if he wanted.  While this has been awesome for organizing time, he's pretty messy when it comes to paper.  So... secondly, we're figuring an inbox is a good first step for paper management (and he could add "empty inbox" to his mind map).  He doesn't like missing pieces of paper, but he's not buying into any kind of file system... yet!

So... this process is intriguing!  We're just gradually helping him develop good habits and tools as he finds a need to get things done :)  Cool!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Dog For Us?

It's been awhile since I blogged and I've decided to not even try to keep up with posting all the cute antics... they're still coming strong* :)  So, to get back into the swing of things, I figured I'd update with the latest big news here that's all about a six to eight month trial with a particular yellow lab named Tracker.

I'm a dog person.  My husband is not.  I don't know about our son.  For a long time, I've wondered if the simpler social rules of interacting with a dog would be a value for him.  I loved having a dog that I could cry on when I was being a goofy teenager.  Dogs will always love you and lick your tears and they love to be petted.  My son is also very sensory seeking so I thought that a dog could be something that would really help him as he matures and deals with the challenges of Autism.  

Throughout high school, I raised guide dog puppies using this program.  So, that's what we're doing now to test if having a dog is a good idea for our family.  We got Tracker when he was seven months old and he's now nine months old.  So far, it's been a bumpy road.  My son tends to get a higher voice when he doesn't like something and that makes Tracker think that it's play time (and then my son will get angry as rough housing increases instead of stopping).  My son also tends to do more prodding and not really petting; he's learning.  Tracker is also learning that licking will not get him a play buddy because my son hates it.  But, they're figuring out how to interact with each other and... we'll see how it works out.  Tracker will return to the guide dog school for formal training when he's 13-15 months old.  For now, I'll keep trying to help my son enjoy him and help Tracker learn all the skills he'll need as a guide dog.  The verdict is still out, but I do get some cute pictures when they click and enjoy each other! 

* I send out weekly email updates, so if you do want to get the antics, just let me know.