Jump to content

My autistic Godson helped reduce my stash.


noelh
 Share

Recommended Posts

My Godson and his Dad appeared at the door tonight. He's 11 and is in fact autistic. I'm sure those of you with experience of autistic children know how difficult that can be. 

 

I had  recently visited their house and noted two Airfix kits, a Higgins boat and inevitably a Spitfire. His parents explained that  social services here had sent a chap around who occupied his time building the kits with him as a form of therapy. They had visited the local LMS and bought the kits. The Spitfire is easy but the Higgins boat reflects his Mother's surname and indeed my wife. Anyway in an attempt to distract him from getting in the way while his Dad was installing a washing machine we'd just brought to the house. I told him he could come over and pick out some kits from my stash. One thing I know about him is that if you promise something he will remember. So I was not surprised. 

 

He's very comfortable with me and my two boys. I've babysat him since he was a baby and he often spends time with us. So we headed to my stash in the attic. We began digging and it was amazing how knowledgeable he is. He pointed out that the colour scheme of the Aer Lingus models in my stash had changed recently. He wasn't interested in any of the jets or helicopters but he thought the Matchbox Wessex looked a bit like a Chinook. I was amazed he even knew what a Chinook was. 

 I unearthed an Airfix Fw190 but he wasn't too keen initially. I also showed him a 1/48 kit but he told me he preferred 1/72 scale. But once I found an Airfix starter kit Hurricane he had that straight away because he knew that went with the Spitfire. I told him he needed a Bf109E to fight his Spitfire and Hurricane. I dug one out and he went away very happy with an Fw190 as well although as I gravely explained it would never have met the RAF MkI aeroplanes. 

 

I'm no expert on autism but I suspect building models is something that would appeal. The detail and concentration required would be up his street. He's bright and unless you knew what to look for you'd never know. But his parents have suffered the violence and the frustration. 

 

I don't know how long social services will supply the support but it seems I may have made a rod for my back. On the other hand maybe my stash will actually be built by someone. 

 

My two boys have zero interest. So someone needs to build them. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by noelh
  • Like 34
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • noelh changed the title to My autistic Godson helped reduce my stash.

Well done there Noel, one of my sons has mild autism & though not into modelling he is very focussed & amazingly knowledgeable too, thankfully we've not had to deal with the tougher side of it. Keep up the good work.

Steve.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well done Noelh. :wub:

I've got a daughter who's autistic, and my youngest son as well. 

My daughter isn't in to modelling, but she's great at creating 3D birthday cards from various bits of papers. 

But I've got my youngest son to build, and I think it helps him with his problems, and his stash is growing faster than my own. :D 

Hope it will work out fine for your Godson. 

 

/Bosse

  • Like 4
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My Nephew is high on the spectrum and I know exactly what you mean about making a promise. I have learned that if you say it you have to follow through.

He used to help me with my builds but has now moved overseas but before he went he cherry picked the kits he wanted from my pile to take with him. When I go across to visit I will be taking more supplies for him both kits and sundries

as the paints and glues are difficult to get hold of in Marmaris. 

 

I do get regular video calls from him to show me the latest results of his builds.

 

Cheers,

Alistair

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's great to hear that you've helped him to find enjoyment in model making Noel, that also helps you to manage your stash.

 

The spectrum is broad and includes people that present their talents, interests and challenges in many different ways and it is always great when something, no matter how small, helps the individual and their circumstances and even better when we appreciate why.

 

 

 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the comments and indeed likes. Word back is that he is very pleased with his haul. 

 

I don't want to take much credit because his parents and sibling bear the brunt. In fact his sister was born with a congenital heart condition which requires constant care. So you can imagine how tough it's been for them. But luckily the extended family is always ready to step in. Which is fortunate. We all do our bit to give a little respite. 

 

My only worry now is that he starts turning out nicely made models and make me look bad. 😉

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have no experience with the autism spectrum; but, I have read that their intelligence is "normal(what the average person has)" to high. It is their inability to relate to people that often, in the past, led people to believe that it was lower. Since the 1990s we have discovered that their intelligence is quite good. New therapies, and, work has helped them and us to find ways to really help them. They do often seem to relate to things than people. @noelh, and @stevehnz, and the others here have seemed to find ways that work for them and more importantly, the children. Pets and animals also seem to help them. Dogs, cats, birds, and even horses seem to help "expand" their interest in the world. Oh, Noel, if his models start looking better; perhaps you ask what he is doing with the kits. I sure would do it.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Indeed he and his sister also go horse riding. I have read that horses are very beneficial to autistic people, actually I think horses are good for everyone. Unless you bet on them too much. 🤔

 

I'll be definitely be watching what he makes. His eye for detail is superb. 

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's really nice to hear, sir.  I'm lucky enough to teach Autistic kids for a living and whilst it can be hard it is an incredibly rewarding, inspiring and humbling experience.  A lot of young people with ASC (Autism spectrum conditions) struggle due to lack of understanding from other people and channelling their energies into activities that fully tick their boxes.  It's great that your godson has found an activity that he can let himself become absorbed in, and it will be especially beneficial if he can do it alongside your building as this will provide him with wins all round.

 

All power to your elbow, sir.

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Noel,

 

What a truly wonderful story! This is an interest to nurture and encourage.

 

My eldest son is about halfway up the Spectrum and when younger he displayed all the usual traits. He's fourteen now and doing very well in mainstream education.

 

Last year, as part of their birthday presents, I sent Tomahawk starter sets to him and his younger brother, who's not autistic. I understand that he enjoyed building it, and I've sent other kits since. It's just a shame that it's an activity that we haven't been able to share.

 

So, everyone, please do all you can to encourage the youngsters you know who will benefit from the honing of their motor skills, the growth in ability and the sense of achievement that comes from model building.

 

With kind regards,

Mark

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My stepdaughter has been living with me since the age of 3 and now she is 18. She was diagnosed with "Asperger-Syndrome" years ago, which is the milder form of autism, lower in the spectrum. She is not a trouble kid, in fact a very friendly and rewarding person, but I have met some other parents of autistic children and some of them have to carry an incredible load.

My stepdaughter loves art, she makes wonderful paintings in many hours of concentrated effort. Admirable. Unfortunatly she is not interested at all in apprenticeship or study of any kind. In september she will start a second time in a place where kids with any kind of problem (physical, mental, emotional) are supported to find a place in life and economy. We hope for the best.

 

If you ever meet autistic people, do not by shy, they usually are very interesting!

 

Volker

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, VolkerR. said:

My stepdaughter has been living with me since the age of 3 and now she is 18. She was diagnosed with "Asperger-Syndrome" years ago, which is the milder form of autism, lower in the spectrum. She is not a trouble kid, in fact a very friendly and rewarding person, but I have met some other parents of autistic children and some of them have to carry an incredible load.

My stepdaughter loves art, she makes wonderful paintings in many hours of concentrated effort. Admirable. Unfortunatly she is not interested at all in apprenticeship or study of any kind. In september she will start a second time in a place where kids with any kind of problem (physical, mental, emotional) are supported to find a place in life and economy. We hope for the best.

 

If you ever meet autistic people, do not by shy, they usually are very interesting!

 

Volker

Some of my best software developers had Asperger's tendencies. You just didn't put them in front of the client. Blunt wasn't in it! Terrific people though, if you followed their rules.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...