Today I attended my son's last Shakespeare and Autism class. It's a fascinating idea to get autistic kids communicating through the work and exaggerated facial expressions and gestures of Shakespearian plays. This is a video about it that was released last year, my son is in this video.
The play the facilitators chose was The Tempest and the kids and actors were jumping around, calling themselves Caliban and having a good time. I met the person who has been my son's acting partner for the past two years, a very sincere and devoted actor and teacher. This is them on the program's webpage.
Today my son came into the gym with his partner, saw all the people and chairs set up (there were about 15 people watching, which does not happen) and said, "Why did you do this?" He does not like crowds. That he would say something about it speaks volumes.
About five minutes into the session, my son got up and walked away. His partner followed him, kept him in the room and they sat away from the group for the rest of the session.
And they stayed there, I'm sure the crowd did not help, my presence was probably a distraction as well. It's one of those times you want your son to participate, or even watch from the close sidelines instead of stress and reluctance. It's hard to watch, and harder to balance your own expectations with what your child wants to do, and his capabilities.