Alex's new assessment has officially begun. We had our parent intake appointment to discuss what we were looking for.
I've got to talk to Dave about how he phrases things. He told them that "he always follows through", implying that I don't. I've been working on Alex's oppositional behaviour (like when I tell him to do something and he starts to whine, even if he complies). So, yes, sometimes the issue gets clouded when Alex starts to tantrum. But I always insist on completion of the two goals: what I've asked him to do and doing it without whining.
That aside, I'm pleased with how we've started. The psychologist had good questions about how to get Alex to work with her and how to make the assessment useful. He doesn't do well on the standardized tests so we'll do them in a non-standard way. We're interested in knowing what he can do and what he can't, not in whether or not he can comply with the testing protocols.
The other surprise for me was that Dave said he wasn't sure this was a necessary step. Since Alex is likely to go through significant behaviour changes during puberty, he doesn't see how knowing where Alex is now will be helpful. I suppose this is probably a fairly typical attitude but I'm surprised he doesn't see what is so clear to me.
As Alex gets bigger and older, it will be more difficult to work with him. He'll be able to resist physical prompts. And his brain and behaviours will become more entrenched. Thus we need to start now on some of the challenges which are likely to limit his independence (like toileting, bolting and compliance).
Next week we start the actual testing sessions. I'll be bringing treats to use as reinforcers as well as a visual strip to remind Alex of the goals.