Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Losing His Level 4 Privileges

Kai’s performance at school recently has been mediocre at best. It is not so bad like in the old days when he had major incidents a few times a week, but we’re not seeing very many high scores on his daily Point Sheet either. The feedback from staff has been that Kai has been excessively silly and hyperactive.

At his therapeutic school, students earn extra privileges as they advance on the Level system. When Kai reached Level 4 last spring, he gained the privilege of moving about the school independently and using the Level 4/5 Lounge. I believe the lounge has special games and activities that students can play during breaks. When we visited the school, we saw Kai’s photo among those on the door of the lounge.

In order to maintain their Level 4 privileges, students must maintain at least an 85% average on their Point Sheet. This week, Kai’s average dropped below that.

The good news is that he seems motivated to get his average back up.

Yesterday, he had his highest score in a long time. Though it didn’t seem so high when my wife pulled the Point Sheet out of his backpack. It said 85%.

Kai immediately protested and said it was a mistake. He said he had a great day. And when my wife added up the scores from each period, she saw that the total was wrong. It should have been 93%.

Kai’s reaction?

“The teacher’s stupid!”

My wife did not agree with that comment but she did email the teacher to let her know to correct the score. Kai will need every point to earn back his privileges.

We shall see if he can raise his score back up over the threshold, and then maintain it. We are wondering whether a change in his medication might be contributing to his behavior, and are contemplating what to do about it.

Well, let’s see what happens the rest of this week.


  1. I wish I could give some helpful advice here. When I was in Elementary School in the 60s, as you know, there was no medication. The hyperactive children had physical outlets. I don't know Kai's physical regimen. I can only relate how I managed to get myself under control. It was only through extensive exercise that I was able to sit in a classroom. To give you an example of the calories I was burning on a daily basis in High Anatomy and Physiology class, we had to log all of our intake and calculate the calories. I was ingesting over 10,000 in and day out. I couldn't gain a pound...and if I didn't work my body, I was so fidgety I couldn't concentrate or relax. My mind and body was in a state of constant overdrive. The exercise had to be of high enough intensity and for long enough duration for me to be able to sit still and to have my mind in the present.

    I started with at least one hour (but I usually exercised far longer) and I gradually increased the intensity. The sweat absolutely soaked my exercise wear...and with the sweat...all my excess energy dissipated.

    Without exercising...I would have been a lost child. The key, as with anything in life, lies in the quantity of quality. A child with a much higher level of energy must have a higher level of exercise. One hour straight should be the minimum (just start at low intensity...such as walking). Gradually up the intensity to where though the person never gets nauseated or out of breath...and where he will be breathing diaphragmatically (a very deep inhalation is only possible by doing so...and the lungs don't hurt since the breathing is slowed...but very deep). I knew many boys, when I was young, who would be classified as being hyperactive today were it not for their heavy involvement in sports.

    Also, it is a positive outlet for stress and anger. After a workout, there should be none left. The body should feel depleted and thoroughly relaxed. Most places which have exercise for children simply don't go at a high enough intensity or for long enough for children to really benefit. When I was a child...I trained with their level. Never had I felt so alive as when I trained at such intensity and for so long. I simply cannot stress enough how this training changed my life for the better. All of life has been sweet because of this.

    1. Thanks for your well-considered thoughts, Shiroi. We do have Kai in exercise programs a couple days a week, and try to make time on other days as well. But it is a challenge to both find the time and motivate him to do it to the extent that you suggest. While I have no doubt that it would be beneficial, it is not easy to make happen. We will continue to work on that though. Thanks!

  2. Well, I'm sorry he's having some issues and hopefully you'll be able to figure out if there are any outside things like his meds that are contributing. And I'm so glad you did a recount and found the's great that he's motivated to get his Level 4 standing back!

    You'll be dealing with puberty issues all to soon. haha. Our Alex had the worst time with that as far as behavior changes. It doesn't last forever, though...just remember that. :)

    1. Oh nn, I don't even want to think about puberty! If I just don't think about it, maybe it won't happen. ;)


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