Progress reports came home yesterday. Background: DS (who is on the autism spectrum) is almost 5 and in a 5 days/week, full-day inclusion Pre-K at our town's public elementary school. He has speech therapy and OT weekly as part of his IEP (one individual session and one group session per week for each). All of his academic readiness items were rated "M" for "Mastered," which didn't surprise us - he's great with numbers, letters, reading, etc. The social section was more of a downer, as most items were rated "NTE" for "Needs Time & Exposure." And the comments section said (among other things about him being well-mannered, kind, and eager to learn and showing good growth/progress):
"If interested in the lesson at hand, he can be observed being a very active participant in the classroom. However, there are days when he chooses not to participate at all. I don't feel this is due to his inability to answer questions appropriately and/or understand the questions being asked. I feel this may be due to him internalizing ideas or wanting to share about a different subject. Once he has something in his mind that he wants to share, he has to get it out before he can move on."
Other negative/needs work comments were "He is a little sensitive after conflict arises, even if not at fault. His reaction to others does not often imitate a peer's reaction from a similar circumstance. As well, social cues are not always identified."
Any suggestions/recommendations for ways to work on these things specifically? We have parent-teacher conferences on Friday, but I figured it couldn't hurt to ask other parents who have maybe dealt with these issues for ideas or things that have worked for you. Any advice is appreciated!
DS had this same teacher last year when he was 3/4 years old, and she said in our fall conference "He really doesn't strike me as having ASD, more like a communication or processing disorder." Now that his communication has grown by leaps and bounds, it seems she's starting to notice the social stuff that's been apparent to us for a while. As I've said on this board before, the social aspect hardest for me to handle. I even said to DH last night, "I think I'd rather he were bad at the school stuff but great at the social stuff, because I'm afraid of how difficult life will be for him." DH thinks I'm focusing too much on the negative parts of the progress report but I worry. Anyway, TIA for your thoughts and opinions!