Xposting in Special Needs.
Not sure what to do. My 7yo ds has mild Asperger's and we've been through holy heck with him (PROFOUNDLY delayed as an infant--to the point of suspected cerebral palsy, through countless therapies and interventions, in different daycare/preschool programs until we pulled him at the pre-k year and kept him home). He tested gifted as he was entering the K year (and exiting SpEd services). We've already had some bullying incidents with kids on the block. :( Under control now, but requires a LOT of extra work on behalf of all of the parents (and we're moving in 2mo).
He's been home and I think it's been good because in the last 2 years we got a surprise adopted daughter (she was a SafeHaven baby just as our license was going to expire), lost a baby in 2nd trimester, lost the two people closest to me in my life, had to relocate out of state, and move 4 times related to that... blah, blah, blah... it's been rough. I think it was good he was home during that.
But he has zero motivation to do anything other than watch TV and play Pokemon cards. He gets limited screen time because it makes him extremely aggressive. He has zero desire to do anything of any educational value at home and I haven't really pushed it because we understand that delayed academics works.
The problem is that maybe for him, delayed academics wasn't the way to go. We had him in a Montessori around 4yo (it was the last school he attended) and they agreed he simply needed more structure. And as he enters what would be his 2nd grade year and I look at actually teaching him, I'm concerned about the pushback I'm going to get.
He's taken a few enrichment classes through the homeschool coop and done alright. But this morning I went to see a Montessori for my 2-1/2yo for part time next year and couldn't find care for ds. Of course, he loved it (he loves any place that has kids there). But I kind of liked it, too. It was EXTREMELY community-oriented and went through high school. The older kids mentor and look out for the younger kids and among other things, there is a gentle self-regulation of social rules. And they do a field trip every Friday in addition to travel trips every year (last year they went to Italy--next year to Boston for US History which is ds' favorite subject).
So on one hand, I feel like it COULD be a great place for ds. On the other hand, I'm wondering how they're going to inspire that "intrinsic motivation" that he completely lacks... and what if they can't? He's not a neurotypical kid--so I can't just sit back and accept the whole "No, no, dear--they all come around" because they don't generally account for kids in the spectrum with that stuff.
I've spent these years figuring out how he might best learn and have finally nailed down some curriculums for specific subjects that I think would fit us best... and bought it all. I just don't know how to get him from a "we won't do it if he's not interested" mode to actually learning (and sorry, but I can't completely unschool--I don't know that he'll never have to enter a school). And I know I can't replicate the social learning of a closely supervised, gently community of children. THAT is VERY appealing. He has done so well with close supervision and mentoring of social situations so far, but we're now at a stage where mommy isn't really cutting it. :/
If you've read this far... thank you. If you have insights or advice, thank you more!