Utter Autism

December 11, 2007

It’s History

I wrote a while back about Adrian’s journal pages.  We’ve continued to have him type out sentences both here at home and at school.  I don’t know what they’re experiencing at school, but I find it hard to put words to our experiences here at home.  To say that Adrian is thrilled about this activity might be an understatement.  When I bring out the notebook that I’ve been slowly filling with words/icons, he laughs and giggles and gets all excited.  He loves being able to write out, word by word, his thoughts.

Ok, so maybe it’s not exactly all his thoughts.  But here at home, he chooses the topic from among the words/icons I’ve provided him in the notebook.  I then do my best to piece together a sentence that I believe expresses what he probably wants to say.

Today he choose the Christmas tree and decorations.  Adrian loves Christmas trees.  And he absolutely adores putting on the decorations.  So I pieced together two sentences. 

We put up our Christmas tree. I like to put on the decorations.

He was so excited about typing the sentences out, he could hardly contain himself.  It’s such a thrill for me to see him enjoy expressing himself this way. 

But the most recent change to the programming in the journal makes the whole experience take on a whole new meaning.  I wanted to give Adrian a way to go back and look at what he’d written in the past.  I had some trouble finding a way to automate the retrieval of the files… but I’ve finally worked out a solution. 

Journal Calendar

To save or load a journal entry, the new program takes him to a calendar page.  Here he can save a new entry under the correct date or push the button for a date to retrieve that day’s entry.  He’ll still need some guidance in identifying the date that a file should be saved in (a great way to work on those calendar skills in a functional way) but in the end I hope he’ll be able to use it independently.

Tonight Adrian pulled out the ‘elevator’ icon from the notebook.  We’d written an entry about using the elevator at the mall about a month ago.  I was able to show him how to retrieve that entry by going back a month and pushing the date.  He sat and listened to it over and over, laughing the whole time.  Now Adrian has history.


  1. Hi. I have enjoyed reading through your site several times. I am very impressed and so happy that Adrian has a way to communicate. I found your site because I am also the mom of a son who is non-verbal with special needs. My son has autistic like tendencies but he does not have autism. He has what is called: agenesis of the corpus callosum. He is missing the corpus callosum-the middle section of the brain. It is the part that connects the two hemispheres together and allows for communication between the right and left hemispheres of the brain. My son has used a DynaVox communication device for the past six years. He uses the DynaMyte 3100 but we are looking to upgrade to meet his growing needs. That is how I found your site. I was looking up information for the DynaVox V. I absolutely love how much information you give, the photos of pages you show and how well you describe your experience and that of Adrian and how he is doing with the DynaVox V as well as how it opens his world. I love how you write that he giggles and laughs with the things that are now in a place where he has access to explore and use them. Words, phrases, happiness and communication. It’s great! I would like to know if you have had any problems with the DynaVox V if I may ask. I look forward to reading more of your page. Happy Holidays to you, Adrian and your whole family. Sandie & Matthew

    Comment by Sandie — December 12, 2007 @ 4:44 pm

  2. It is so awesome to read about all the things Adrian is able to do now. I can imagine he is incredibly excited to be able to finally express his thoughts. You can tell just by looking at him that there is so much going on inside – now we can all know what it is. Give him a hug and kiss for me!

    Comment by Aunt Cammie — December 12, 2007 @ 8:17 pm

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