Keeping the promise I made at the end of my last MeMe update, here is the story of how we trained MeMe to stop stomping on the stairs.
Those who have been keeping up with my blog know that we’ve recently moved from a first-floor apartment to our own home so this stairs issue is a new one. Of course we had the running, stomping, marching across the floor which is the same proprioceptive dysfunction, but only after I asked him billions of times to climb or descend the stairs quietly did it hit me that he actually can’t because he doesn’t know how.
I wasn’t sure if training him would help but since we had so much success with the Have A Ball Learning for ADD/ADHD exercise program and that thick invisible wall that would stand between us every time I spoke to him had disintegrated, I figured we might have a chance. Ordinarily (meaning before we did the HABL exercises) whenever I spoke to MeMe it was like talking to the wall and so I was really pleased when this game that I made up on the spot, worked.
I stood at the bottom of the stairs, turned around with my back to him and eyes closed. I instructed him to creep up a few of the stairs as quietly as possible and I was going to guess how many stairs he climbed. Of course guessing that round was a no-brainer since he clattered up 3 stairs, but then I stood him at the bottom of the steps with his eyes closed, and he had to guess how many I climbed. He was shocked to discover I was most of the way upstairs and he had only heard one step creak. He wanted another turn and another as he tried to fool me into guessing the wrong number. By the end of the ten minute game, I was guessing wrong and very happy about it.
Then we did the same thing but going down the stairs this time. After a few minutes MeMe learned what I had meant all those times when I requested “Soft feet on the stairs, please!” And then we did a spinoff version of the game for his bunkbed ladder, and now when we sit in our living room downstairs, we no longer wonder when the ceiling will fall in.
Have you ever spontaneously created a game that solved your child’s sensory issue? Share your story!