I have come across a brilliant podcast and indeed, a brilliant website. I am a Twitter “friend” of Annie Fox (@annie_fox) and she recently sent a Tweet about her latest podcast:
Well I don’t have an autistic child (or any child for that matter) but I am a teacher and one who, over many years of experience, has tried to get to know about autism and other conditions of children who may well be in my class or school.
As well as this, I have had to deal with parents who have children with various disabilities, of which autism is just one. It helps, as a teacher, if we can try to relate to what those parents are trying to do on a daily basis for their child and to try and understand how school fits in to the wider life of their child.
The podcast was with Amelia Starr who has written a book called “Raising Brandon” in which she writes about living, loving and understanding her son Brandon who has autism and has learnt to be independent and cope with the world in his own way. Brandon is now 36 years of age and the book is about Amalia’s journey with her son to where he is now.
The podcast is simply riveting from beginning to end. It is so professionally produced by Annie and like all the best of podcasts benefits from the fact that we have two very expressive speakers talking to each other and we feel privileged to be in their company and “overhear” their conversation.
Amalia tells us of the bullying, tormenting and non-acceptance that Brandon had to endure and the way that she had to bring him up, cope with her own feelings about her adequacy to deal with him, try and be a mother to his brother (who has himself had a journey to understand his brother Brandon) and also deal with the failure of her husband to deal with bringing up an autistic child which eventually led to her marriage split up.
I found this podcast moving and enlightening. I feel that Annie’s comments at one point, where she said that Amalia’s observations about parenting Brandon were really about parenting any child, were absolutely the case.
I wrote to Annie saying that I was impressed by her podcast and she wrote back suggesting that I look at her other podcasts on her website http://anniefox.com/fc.html So far I have managed to listen to “So Sexy So Soon” with Diane E. Levin, which was again an excellent podcast on an important issue for parents and of course, for us teachers.
I shall work my way through these podcasts and am really pleased that I have managed to find such a really good resource which I am happy to recommend to others.