Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_LucyAnd here are some St Lucia dolls I made with silk dresses and silk-tops for hair.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Mary is wearing a red silk dress with a blue cloak and Joseph has a felt tunic and blue felt cloak. Baby Jesus is lying on a manger made from cinnamon sticks. The donkey and ox are made from felt. I put the LED lights inside the stable and around the scene. My son keeps switching it to flashing effects so itlooks like a disco! The "hay" is made from some silver-gold stuff I got from a Christmas shop that is supposed to go on the Christmas tree, but I thought it looked pretty cosmic in the stable (especially with disco lights!):
The shepherds' clothes are made from wool felt and I have knitted small waistcoats for two of them, and a crocheted cap for two of them.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
The Little Troll tells the story of a troll, stuck in his biology, where he is doomed to a tribe of trolls that are uncooperative and mean to each other. But this little troll wants something more than this wretched life. He sees the humans and longs to be like them, but doesn't know how. One day, he overhears a man telling a boy that if he doesn't help others and put others before himself, he is nothing better than a troll. The little troll has found the key that will unlock his prison - altruism. He spends the next few years helping humans and animals at every chance. The narrator says: "The more he helped others, the better he became at helping". Slowly he begins to lose his troll-like features and grow more like a human. The ending has him walking into a church where the people all say: "welcome to the world of humans". This is my all time favorite children's book.
Will the practice of altruism and cooperation remediate autism? I believe it will! Since my son was five, we have kept a Book of Good Deeds, recording every good deed he has done. Plus we encourage "random acts of kindness" as a fun thing to do, if only to pull out a weed from a neighbour's lawn. I truly think this has challenged him out of his own little world.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Narrative: I'm still working on this with my son. I taught him how to start a story with a main character, a goal and some obstacles. I demonstrated how most stories have a first and second "turning point". He can't write, but he dictates stories to me, and I create little "books" out of them. He also likes to try to pick the turning points in movies and stories. What does this do for autism? I think it helps them understand patterns in social interactions and activities.
Art: This is definitely not my son's strength! But I bought some of those lovely Lyra colored pencils and we sit and draw a picture together sometimes. He will only draw trains, so often I'll turn the train into something else, or create something humorous about it, ie have it skiing down a mountain, or have flowers growing out of the window. I try to open his mind to new possibilites. Also, we play a game where I do a squiggle and he has to make it into something, and we swap over. Great for increasing non-linear thinking.
Literature: Good literature is my passion! I'm sure this also infects my son as well, as I love reading to him. Currently we're reading Story of the World by S Bauer. Stories enhance the imagination, which is lacking in autism.
Theatre: We love all the plays at Spare Parts Puppet Theatre: they are amazing quality production. Our favorite so far is The Arrivaland its coming again in November. See my previous post about The Arrival here
Time: I recently realised that my son has no ability to perceive "time". I've just started on trying to teach him visually, ie by drawing a plan of the day divided up into hours.
Drama: This would be good, but still haven't done much about it ... Great for "putting yourself in another's shoes".
Theology: I help in the Sunday School class each week. Great compass for kids with SNs who might find themselves disorientated in a world of moral relativism. Also teaches kids that it's good to be good, not for a reward.
Karate: Not "arts" per se, but exactly like the DORE program, except that it's super cheap, by comparison, and a lot more fun. Plus you interact and get different colored belts!
Monday, October 20, 2008
So, even though some waldorf books out there preach about "correct sizes" for dolls for children, I don't believe there are any rules, and neither do the children. The only rule I go by is "fun"!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
"Once upon a time there was a gummy bear and he had a song that went like this: "oh I am a gummy bear". But one day he couldn't remember his song. So he looked all over the whole world for it. He went to a puppet theatre. He drove in a car. He checked inside a trumpet. But he still couldn't find it! So he thought and thought and thought. One day he saw a fairy, and she said with her beautiful voice I will give you your song back to you, IF you go conquer the wicked giant of the east who is conquering the trains of the railway musuem in Bassendean. So he walked all the way to Bassendean and he found it and there was the giant waiting for him; he was on the traintrack. But that wasn't good because he was conquering the whole Mandurah lines. The mandurah line trains were big. Then the gummy bear took over the train and put up its electric bar and ZAP!! the giant was dead, and the gummy bear got his song back again."
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
We made a habitat for him and researched what they eat, which is apparently anything from insects to plants. My son named him Inka.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Knead for about 10 minutes until the dough spings back quickly when you pinch it:
Have your child knead a small piece of dough and create a shape (my son made a snake):
push the dough into 2 or 3 containers like this, and cover with a warm wet teatowel:Leave for at least an hour, even 2 hours in cold weather. You do NOT need to punch it down half way through the rising: that's another big myth! The proof is in the pudding, and here my loaf has more than doubled in 1 hour 15 mins without re-kneading:
You will have already set your oven to 220C, so bake in the middle of the oven for 5 mins on 220C, then reduce the heat to 190C. Bake for 25-30 mins and "voila!"Your child will love home made bread they made themselves:
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
And here's the doll's version:
You will need some string, some chalk and your fabric opened out on the floor. Take the string and tie a knot in one end (we'll call this the neck knot). Hold the neck knot at the back of your child's or doll's neck and then measure down to see how long you want the cape to be. Tie another knot in the string at this point (we'll call this the heel knot). Fold the fabric once width wise. Take your string and place the neck knot a the corner of the folded side. With your other hand hold the heel knot and a piece of chalk along the fold of the fabric. Keeping the string taught, chalk a quarter circle onto the fabric. To make the neckline, measure about 2.5 inches from the neck knot and make another knot. Holding the neck knot at the folded corner and the chalk in your other hand with the new neckline knot, chalk a quarter circle neck line. Cut along these two lines and you will have your cape shape.
For the hood, I cut out 2 diamond shapes, with one side of the diamond half the size of the opening I want for the head. I machined 2 sides together, opened it out and layed it along the neckline and machined along there.
The Leaf fastener
I sewed a hook and eye at the neck. Since I couldn't find anything like a large leaf button in Spotlight, I cut some doll angel wings in half and attached it to the neck fastener.
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Here is my doll stall: under the gum trees and out in the open sunshine:
Here is yours truly with the dolls awaiting adoption:
This is Fran Rosenthall: the Waldorf Kindy teacher who originally taught me how to make waldorf dolls. Here she is inspecting my latest batch:
That baby looks like me! I just love the looks on the kiddies' faces;
A happy customer: