Orangeboy and his main two antagonists are ready for the holidays. As usual, they can't wait to get out of school on break and each has his/her own reasons. Sister doesn't like homework, deadlines, or clothes - she prefers bare legs and feet even in winter; Brother likes to hang out at home and eat meals that don't easily pack in his allergy-safe lunchbox for school; and Orangeboy, of course, just wants to sleep late and not have to socialize.
Orangeboy and the rest also reached their Advanced Reading goals and were recently rewarded with being able to go to a movie at a local theatre with all the other AR successful students. Orangeboy was very excited about going to the movie even though he doesn't really like movies as much as other kids usually do. I think it was more about it being a reward and solid proof for a met goal that excited him - and possibly the free sprite and popcorn.
Orangeboy also participated in the school's writing contest this month. Last year, you may remember, I was surprised to find out that his story was picked to represent the school in a district writing contest. However, this year he wasn't too confident that he wrote a good story. He told me that the topic was something "a little hard for me".
He had to write about "My Best Day with Someone Special".
I said, "Oh, so having to write about a social interaction is hard for you."
He replied with a matter-of-fact, "yes."
"So if had been "My Best Day with a Special Object" it would have been easy?"
He acknowledged, "Yes, it would."
Hey, the boy now knows himself at least! He gets it, now if he will only become more dissatisfied with the way things are and get to work trying to socialize more. He's supposed to be working on making at least ONE friend in his class. It can be a girl or a boy.
"Just pick someone nice and talk to them. Maybe at some point ask them if they want to come to your house and play sometime."
It occurs to me that making a chart with each step to friendship and playdate might actually work for him since he likes clear goals and rewards. I could put a gold star on each step that he completes:
"Said hi to the kid sitting next to you at lunch" STAR!
"Offered your brownie to the same kid with a smile and he/she accepted" STAR!
"Asked friend candidate if he/she likes computers and listened for an answer" STAR!
"Asked FC what is his/her favorite TV show or game and can remember answer" STAR!
"Talked to FC about his/her favorite TV show or game and looked to see if he/she was looking at you and listening" STAR!
"FC asked you a question and you answered and made eye contact" STAR!
"Smiled and said hi to FC , using FC's name, when you arrived at school and got an good answer back" STAR!
How many steps are there before reaching friend status?
In theory, this sounds good but I would be really reluctant to do it. What if I put a step on the chart that doesn't work or gets skipped and Orangeboy won't move on? He might keep asking the same kid everyday "So, what's your favorite game?" until he gets a response and not see that he's being ignored and needs to move on.
He might keep offering a brownie to a kid who's allergic to chocolate.
If only it were so easy to delineate the steps to friendship and set a goal and get it done.
Make a friend - check!
Make a million - check!
Write a bestseller - check!
Find a job I love everyday for the rest of my life - check!
Stay thin and healthy - check!
Live happily ever after - check!