Friday, October 24, 2014

31 for 21: October 23 - Don't Test Me!

I had read about this before Sofia was born, but we are seeing it in action right now.

Children with Down syndrome are tested. Often. Continuously. By lots of people. By their parents. By teachers. By therapists. By just about everyone.

"Show us how you do this." "Let's hear you read that." "How high can you count?"

It's endless.

So, quite naturally, they become very adept at knowing when they are being tested. And they also become adept at blowing the test up in your face.

We see this a lot with Sofia and her conversations with certain people, especially with David. She knows that he will "quiz" her, by asking her lots of questions. So she shuts down. Either she won't answer him, or she'll tell him he's "Bothering Me".

We are seeing it now in her schoolwork. This week, whenever we sat down to do homework, either she would not cooperate to DO anything, or she would do it all purposefully incorrectly. One sheet this week was to pick the correct word to complete a sentence, given two words to choose from. For the ENTIRE page, she picked the wrong word. And she knew what she was doing. Tonight, she decided not to do her math correctly. Her counting was all over the place, or she would make up numbers. And I've seen her do the same pages so beautifully, so I know it was all attitude. She also "completed" a word search by circling every letter in some random combination - and pretended to sound out all the "words" she found.

It's all attitude. She CAN do this stuff. She just CHOOSES not to. Her teacher sees the same thing in school. When she's "on", she's terrific. When she's in a mood, forget it.

(She'll outgrow it,,, eventually. This past summer, there was a gentleman in his 20s with DS in the rental house next to us on the Cape. When his mom pointed out that Sofia had DS, he said, "yeah, I used to have that, too." I think it definitely was because now, as an adult, he is no longer TESTED all the time!)