The voice of choice

Another short clip. I found this interesting. We regularly chill and chat over google maps and we’ve always managed to communicate pretty successfully using a combination of pointing, gesturing and vocalisations (from Archie I mean). Here while chatting about some recent roadworks it became important to Archie to have the talker say ‘road’, even though I had shown that I understood what he meant. I think this was his first request for me to find a new word on the talker for him, and he also read (and completed) the sequence himself, so must have understood how Icon Tutor works.

Archie’s humming The Stone Roses a lot this week if you’re trying to place the tune!

Lessons for life

We had Archie’s annual review last week. At the end the head asked us what we felt was important for Archie in the future. My answer was quite simple, he has to be able to get out and access life. To do this it is essential that he learns to behave appropriately, particularly in public (which of course can be aided by better communication etc etc).

So onto this week and it’s half term. We’ve had our moments; a rather noisy public meltdown when we had a difference of opinion about where we were heading for example, but in general he’s relatively easy to get out and about, especially if I have a helping hand from a PA courtesy of direct payments.

So far we’ve headed to the beach (of course) where Archie accosted Tim the surf coach and helped himself to his car. And we’ve been on the Plymouth Wheel and skipped happily along the Hoe (until we had our difference of opinion). For now his behaviour is manageable. Of course the tut tut brigade will always tut but most of the time he behaves in a way that I think is acceptable.  We’re aware that could change and I remain an enthusiastic supporter of The Challenging Behaviour Foundation. They do good work, and provide some excellent resources.

For the moment we enjoy the good times and assume they’ll continue.

Convertible please

Before Google maps Archie loved YouTube. He used to watch a lot of videos of cars driving down motorways, and across bridges and trains leaving stations. He was able to navigate using search results providing we used the same starting screen each time.

Archie also loves cars, and particularly convertibles. He loves things that open and close so an automated convertible is truly a thing of beauty to him. A couple of weeks ago Nikki, Archie’s speech and language therapist showed him some videos of convertibles on YouTube. This was fairly disastrous for speech therapy as he was lost of the rest of the session watching video after video of convertibles with their roof up, no down, no up.

Having watched the above video, and believe me, Archie has; a lot; I can sort of see the attraction. Maybe.

Anyway Archie hasn’t really watched them for a while although I suspect he might have been thinking about them because as soon as he heard that tonight’s speech therapy session was cancelled (get well soon Nikki), he appeared, talker in hand and asked for ‘car open’. Unprompted and a first. My Safari history suggests that rather a lot of cars were watched….

Love Mummy …. and Daddy

Just a quick one today. Archie has had one clear word for the last few years – Mummy. I managed to build on this a bit by saying things like ‘who do you love?’ -he’d say ‘Mummy’. (Then we’d do the opposite – ‘who does Mummy love?’ ‘Narheen’ which is about as close as he gets to his name). But we never really moved on from that.

Today Archie accidentally pressed love on the talker. So I said ‘oh who?’ and he pressed ‘Mummy’. A slight pause; and this was followed by “Daddy’.   I think it made Richard’s day.