An example of how repetition helps Gavin learn or maintain skills – Page 2

An example of how repetition helps Gavin learn or maintain skills

I don’t understand how he could shave his chin and mustache, leaving the rest just kinda sitting there. I’m not sure what’s going on in his head when he walks away thinking he’s done. It’s obvious that he missed the rest of his face. That hair doesn’t grow in very thick but it’s definitely there.

Long story short, after quite a few tries, and several meltdowns later, he finally got everything. The end result was a job well done but it was not easy getting there.

I could have simply gone and shaved his face for him but then he wouldn’t learn to do it on his own. If Gavin’s is ever going to learn, this kind of thing has to happen. He won’t learn anything if I do it for him or hold his hand while he shaves himself.

He’s always been this way albeit, it’s getting worse as time goes on.

The only way he ever learns is if he does something over and over again until he gets it right. I can coach him from a distance and explain what he needs to do but he needs to do it himself or I’ll be shaving his face for the rest of my life. I don’t want to have to do that, so we work at it.

Anyway, it’s a process because Gavin doesn’t like making mistakes or forgetting things and when he does, he gets very upset. All he needs to do is slow down, take his time and always, always, always double check.

We can provide him a check list, written instructions or even pictures in one form or another on the bathroom mirror but he needs to do the work. These things serve as reminders for him and sometimes they help and sometimes they don’t.

Lizze and I will step in if it becomes clear that he simply cannot complete the task. We just want him to do as much on his own as he can. Any level of independence is a good thing.

This is the kind of thing we spend each and every day working on. This is just one example but there are many more that cross every aspect of his life. It’s exhausting and consumes crazy amounts of time and energy but the alternative isn’t an option.

Repetition is key when it comes to Gavin learning a new skill.

None of this was pleasant or fun but the end result was he remembered to shave on his own. He had to keep trying but he did eventually get it done and he did a good job. ☺

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