This summer has been great! No.. it has been AMAZING! Not only have I been able to do personalized academic work with Buddha, but we’ve had so much fun. The pressure of school was off, but the schedules and point systems stayed in place. Buddha received a weekly schedule every Monday and a daily schedule every morning. We read every day, did math and typing at least twice a week and tried to incorporate science at least once a week. We took trips to the beach, we played in the park, he even went to baseball camp! It was truly a wonderful summer.

Since school starts in one week, I thought it would be a great time to discuss incorporating academics into fun activities so your kids can have a great time and still learn/ practice their skills.

Ways to incorporate academics and social skills (which are just as important as academics) into fun activities:

Fun Activity Academic/Social skills to practice
Going to the Beach Social Studies- Reading a Map

·      Print out a map of the beach

·      Ask your kids to mark all the places he/she wants to go to

·      Have them figure out which order you should do things based on the map (i.e. first get snacks, then go to the beach)

·      Have them make a to-do list

Math- multiplication/algebra

·      Figure out how long the trip to the beach will take driving (i.e. its 50 miles away and you can go 60mph the whole way. How long will it take to get there?)


Playing in a park Following multi-step directions:

·      Give a list of 5 things they have to do in a row and see if they can follow it in the same order without you repeating yourself)

·      Practice using a timer (i.e. ask- how long does it take to go over the monkey bars? How long did it take the second time? Which time was faster and why?)

Playing a board game Math- data collection

·      Ask your children to take data on how many times everyone is winning by making a graph

·      See if there is a pattern. Is someone winning more than the others?

·      Use the data to make guesses on who will win next.

Going to the pool Social skills practice

·      Have them practice introducing themselves

·      Practice ‘please’ and ‘thank you’

·      Work on taking turns (i.e. first let your sister play with the ball then you can)

·      Practice being a good team member by playing games with friends and cheering them on as well.


While you might have already been doing these things, it’s important to point them out and continue doing them. I’ve met children that have no idea how to introduce themselves or children that cannot connect math to real-life problems, so start early! Incorporate what they’re learning into daily activities and remember… Have fun!

I hope you all had as wonderful a summer as I have! If you need any help before the school years starts with graphs, charts or just in need of advice, feel free to contact me at It’s important to start off the school year right!

Summer with Epilepsy

I love summer! I love the freedom, the vitamin D, the light, the change of scenery, and especially the pace. We swing full throttle between energy and placidness like a feather on a lake crest. We bounce between beaches, lakes, museums and play dates, to chilled out self-confinement in our beautiful home until we feel rested and recovered for more sun-filled jaunts. We read, we write, we study, we play, we connect to our bodies, we talk and laugh and live. In the summer we touch every part of living, especially the marks we miss during the year. The marks we miss because of epilepsy.

We’ve collected three years of data now, so I am confident summer bliss is not a fluke. With or without seizures, and let’s be honest we’re never without seizures, it’s the only time of the year we have moments of normal. Moments where Buddha doesn’t feel separate from his peers, moments of ease and flow. In the summer we are not harnessed to a schedule that perpetuates his disability. In the summer we are able to expand and live at whatever pace he needs and the only thing perpetuating is the light in his eyes.

We have bad days, we have wonky place episodes with aggression and hate, we have therapies and lessons. We have tutoring to help him keep up with the gains he worked so hard to make during the year.  And yes, we have schedules. Oh my, do we still live by schedules. We have schedules, timers, to do lists, and point charts for every step of the day. They are his anchor to the world, consistencies that allow him the confidence to expand and explore new sights, new thoughts, new feelings, and new experiences.

But even these bad days are better in the summer. They don’t spotlight the discrepancies in his growth to his peers. They don’t mark his slower progress. Instead, these days illuminate his progress. In the summer, his kindness, his strength of will and heart, and his ability to move through endless cruel fits of fate are bathed in a halo of sunshine that allows him to see how powerful and amazing he is. Summer is the glowing lens through which we see how stupid the idea of normal is. How unnecessary to his success.

If only that were true all of the time.

Fall will be here soon and he will have to once again begin the daily battle of trying to live everyone else’s version of normal. He will try to make it to school a few days a week. He will maybe, just maybe, have the energy and forward brain activity to allow for a sport or activity. He will begin to use his schedule not to mark the fun and progress but to count down the minutes until he can rest for the night after the mental exertion of the day.

In the summer Buddha gets to be Buddha. In the fall and winter and spring, Buddha is the kid with epilepsy.

I love the summer.

I love my little man.

I wish it could always be summer.