Of Audi’s and art

Guest post by Adita Divecha, Karan’s mother

We’re back to Karan’s Tuesday art class at the Jam Jar.

This time, when we walked in, there were many people around. It seemed that the staff from Audi had volunteered for the day.

They wanted the children to paint cars; they had bought the small models of Audi cars and said we could dip them into the paint and roll the tyres across the paper to create painted wheel tracks.

Karan was very excited, I think because there were so many people around and they were taking photographs. He dipped the car in the paint and started making tracks on the paper. He seemed pretty excited about doing it and was pretty quick about it.

Since he doesn’t like getting paint on his fingers, I had to go wash his hands every now and then. The second time he used a paint brush but he wasn’t interested in painting cars, so he just made strokes with the brush the way he wanted to. For the third one, they gave him a sheet with an outline of the car but he didn’t want to stay in the line. He was laughing a lot and having fun.

After that, they kept large sheets of paper on the floor and had drawn a large sized Audi sports car…I think it was an R8. They asked if Karan would sit down on the floor and paint and we decided to give it a try. He was helped by one of the guys from Audi who sat with him. He painted the rear of the car dark blue and the rear shell of the car red and black and silver.

He was fine with sitting on the floor and moving his hands, as his strokes have improved.

As usual I did not take photos, and now Devina is upset because of that. The people from Audi had painted their faces and they seemed to be enjoying themselves along with the children. When we left, they gave each child one of the small car models.

Thanks to Audi and Start for the day!

The #manzilbooks update

Bookmarks designed by Saurabh Chhabra (@2S8)

What’s happening with ManzilBooks? For those joining in now, here’s my plea to the community asking to donate books, and here’s the first #manzilbooks event we held at Wild Peeta

Initially, the school wanted to hold their booksale in June, but haven’t hit the required 10,000 books the people helping them organise the event have requested for the sale to be held in the first place.

Where have they reached? With our donations and independent ones, they’ve passed 4,000. For this reason, they’ve decided to extend the duration of collection over the summer, and hopefully hit the target and carry out the event after the summer, and after Eid.

So…what’s happening?

I’m the contact person for pick-up points near Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, Emirates Hills, Greens, Meadows, Springs, Lakes, JLT, JBR, the Marina. Anastasia (@TDAllonsy) will be looking after Dubai Silcon Oasis, Dubai International Academic City (DIAC) and the surrounding areas.

Alternatively, Wild Peeta has generously donated its Dubai World Trade Centre outlet as a drop-off point. If dropping the books off there is more convenient, then please do so. Do drop me an email (autism [at] devinadivecha [dot] com) to let me know you’ve done so. There’s a collection of books people have dropped off along with these lovely bookmarks for people to have a sit-down and read while they eat (make sure you don’t drop any food or drink on the books!).

We hope you’ll spread the word…if anyone is thinking of getting rid of their books, please point them our way! 

What to say and not say to a parent that has a child with Autism | Stuart Duncan

What to say and not say to a parent that has a child with Autism

Written on May 30, 2011 by Stuart Duncan

Filed Under: Autism

I’ve written quite often about how having a child with Autism forces you to have far more patience than you ever thought you could have… but there are still limits. And even though your patience levels can seem limitless for your child, you may find that you don’t have the same tolerances when it comes to others or some of the ignorant things they say, whether innocently intended or not.

There are a few lists out there of things not to say to us parents, but this is more of a list of things not to say or else you may just push us beyond the breaking point. Don’t worry though, I’ll follow it up with some things that I think would actually be nice to say.

do not say

Do not say

  • Your kid just needs proper discipline
  • My kids would never get away with that
  • What made your kid autistic? Was it something you did?

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Read the rest of the post by clicking the link above.

Really identify with this post, and I’m sure Mom will agree with me. We’ve been told some of those things many times and it really, really, really gets our goat. This is a great list of things you should and shouldn’t say to us, so pay attention!!!

Manzil’s annual concert – “I Can”

(First picture in the slideshow was taken at the dress rehearsal a few days before the concert by @SaharLatheef. I don’t have very many pictures from the concert – I’d left my camera with my parents while I helped @shru_ the best I could with the video she was taking of the event.)

As always, Karan’s school hosts a concert for its students to participate in. I’d missed last year’s concert because I was away in UK, so I was quite excited about this year’s. It was held at the Sharjah Cultural Palace and this year was called “I Can”.

The event started off as always with a slideshow of all the students photographs, then the UAE national anthem and the Surah recitation by one of the students. After a singing performance by the students and the Best Buddies from Millennium School, Sharjah, there was a dance performance called Fire and Water. We saw two students graduating from the school this year, much to everyone’s applause and encouragement. Then we had the musical play, I Can, which was an adaptation of Helen Keller’s life. The concert ended as always, with a vote of thanks.

I always love going to these events … whether it’s their concert or their sports days (which I’ve said before). Even if you’re going through a particularly bad patch, attending these events never fails to lift spirits. It works for me anyway. You can go in feeling really bad about something, and walk out feeling on top of the world. Just seeing the student’s enthusiasm, hard work and effort paying off is such a lovely thing. You see the students really giving their all to put on an awesome show for their families and you see how much they’ve progressed since joining the school. The atmosphere is even more charged because of the expectations and hopes the audience has; it seems like such a normal thing…to perform at an event, doesn’t it? Preps for these concerts are even more than what other “normal” schools would go through. The students are given roles according to their ability and are trained to do it well. Karan had to walk in and then go to the fringe of the stage – he was playing a mountain hehe.

Can’t wait for their next event; one of the most exhilarating experiences I have every year.