I came home yesterday and heard some instructional talk coming from behind the couch, which is William’s “quiet time area”. Hhmmm, what’s going on? I was excited to discover this:
I was excited for several reasons. First, there was a time when Eli eagerly sought out “pupils” for Lego instruction (and other related building materials) when he was about 11-12 years old. At the time, there were no takers. Now that he’s (recently) turned 17, he is not as interested in giving in this manner as he is so engrossed in his own passion pursuits (namely, computer programming). So, the fact that he was giving patiently of his time to his younger brother was exciting.
Second, there have been many attempts on my part to offer William, through his interests of castles and knights, to build the same with various building materials. Because of his learning differences, it was always WAY over his head to comprehend the spatial ability to do so. He always begged favor of Eli to construct any of these things for him. Further, starting when he was 3-4 years old, I began to slowly help him develop some visual-spatial abilities. Because he is a creative, right-brained learner, I knew this was intended to be a gift area that had been hindered by something, so I hoped to tap into it some way or another. He had a difficult time, to begin with, even placing blocks in the same location as myself. It took some time to build up imitating a two block construction, and he was only able to do so three-dimensionally, from a real person. He had to work up to having me hide my creation and then duplicating as well as duplicating it from a picture. Eventually, William was able to construct 7-8 block creations both in imitation and by picture.
Because Eli was a huge builder, we have all sorts of types of building material, but William has not gravitated to it, though I’ve seen interest, but because of his inability, he stayed away. Periodically, he gave it a try, but discontinued fairly quickly.
So, to have William not only doing a difficult Lego creation was exciting, but the perseverance I was witnessing was next to extraordinary for him. He has always been one easily frustrated and always ready to quit (which I’ve worked gently but consistently on), so his sticking with it, even eagerly, and also patiently listening to Eli’s oral instructions, another weakness for him (as is for Eli), continued my amazement. Maybe because Eli struggles with verbals makes it a great match for William in how he explains things along with visuals and explanations of how he perceives spatially (one of Eli’s major gifts).
Anyway, after 2-3 several hour long sessions, this was the “product”:
By the way, notice William’s “outfit” . . . he is being a referee (his great right-brained asset is his imagination, displayed through self character and costuming creations) 🙂