I usually use my “Other Blog” (Take Another Step: Life With DC) for posts involving Face Book Statuses, but this was big for DC (and me) so I decided to post it here. It may not seem a big deal to you, but believe me it is a big deal here in DC-land!
(How much of a big deal, you ask? I just washed my hair to get all of the “gray stripe concealer ” spray out so I can dye said gray stripe but I chose to sit here and write this right away, while hoping that no one comes to the door or nothing happens that will force me to leave the house. No, there will not be photos.)
Telling time is not something that is easy for DC. I remember one of his teachers telling me that telling time might be something he will just have to memorize and I do believe that to be true for the most part. This is something like balance (on a bike) that is really difficult to teach. You get it or you don’t.
He understands that there is morning, afternoon and night, but the actual “clock” times that correspond to particular times of day are very often confusing to him. Adding to the confusion is the fact that there are TWO of every hour in a day (sometimes I think Military time would make more sense to him).
For example; he eats breakfast in the morning and lunch in the afternoon and he sort of has an internal clock for that. But when there was early dismissal at school back in the day or he has to come home early from work, he expects dinner to come not too long after he gets home, because dinner usually comes not too long after he gets home.
You are now going to suggest a digital clock or watch…..
He has a watch and although he really does not like to wear anything on his wrist, every once in a while he will put it on. It is helpful only at times when he is asking me when we can go somewhere or do something – I can tell him the numbers to watch for but then instead of continuing to ask me about whatever he was asking about, I get this…
(Uncle ‘Liar’ = DC-speak for Uncle Lyle)
The numbers really do not mean a whole lot to him in correlation to time of day.
When he was younger, he started asking for “5 minutes” when he arrived at school everyday. He did not know how long 5 minutes was or even that it was a length of time, he must have heard it somewhere. But he did figure out that they would leave him alone for a little while so he milked it for all it was worth.
Over the years he has gotten a little bit better about reading the clock but really only hours and sometimes half hours so I was pretty impressed with this last year:
DC: Mom! It’s Seven Fifty (fifteen) o’clock!
Telling time is not something that comes easy to DC. Often he can get the hour (but more often he gets the hands confused so it’s 12 o’clock a lot) and once in a while he can get the half hour.
7:15 with no prompting what-so-ever is HUGE!
Later that same week:
So that happened Monday morning and after a few times asking him what time it was, and not getting the correct answer, I began to think that 7:15 was just a fluke.
He did randomly announce 7:00 correctly on Monday night (hours are easier for him) but this morning he announced 7:25, when it was actually 7:25 (o’clock – we can’t skip the “o’clock”)!
What I am taking from all of this is that he seems to get it right when he’s not asked – when he just decides to tell me what time it is…
and… he seems to be partial to the 7’s.
I’ll take it. It’s progress… but there is still that disconnect to the time of day and the passing of time (if I say “in two hours” or “in an hour”, it generally does not make sense to him, even when I explain and tell him what time it will be in two hours. He understands what time, because I am telling him the actual time. I do also count the numbers on the clock hoping that he will understand that two hours from 12 o’clock would be two o’clock. It just never seems to carry over to the next time.
I said earlier that he seems to have an internal clock for meals, but that clock only works on weekdays. Weekends he starts asking for lunch at about 10 am (sometimes earlier). I have told him many times that 10 am or when ever he is asking is still “morning” and afternoon does not begin until 12 o”clock.
This morning I heard:
“Mom! Lunch is in one hour?”
I looked at the clock and it was 11:00 am and lunch was indeed in one hour!!!!!!
I was shocked (so shocked that I think I scared him at first) and thrilled.
I asked him to repeat it and he did.
He knows he has done something GREAT – I am not quite sure he understands just what he did, even though I’ve told him over and over again – but he knows that I am “Impressed” (he loves that word).
I am not going to count my chickens but maybe it is beginning to make some sense to him.
It is well past noon now and he asked for and made his lunch at 12 on the dot.
And now I am off to take care of the gray stripe…