What followed was usually some sort of harebrained tale, which (naturally) fascinated a younger me. He? Did that?!
Back in the 1950s when my dad was growing up, there was no term for ADHD. But still: my dad had it.
Like … for real.
Most of the stories from my grandma about him involved how hyperactive he was in some way or other.
He only slept three hours a night.
She dressed him in red and put bells on his shoes so she could keep track of him.
He climbed out the milk chute at four years old and the neighbor called to say “hey, it’s 4am – your kid is on my porch” (true story).
One that stuck with me though is that my dad would be too hyper to sit and eat a meal.
Take a bite, run off, come back, take a bite, run off, etc.
So, to get him to eat, my grandma literally had to tie him to his chair.
No way you could tie your kid down nowadays without getting in trouble. But back then they didn’t seem to mind so much.
And you know what?
That was my grandma’s motto, actually. She was a pioneer of special education, and the one thing she lived by was:
“WW … Whatever Works!”
Is tying your kid to a chair so he eats a pretty solution?
Did it work?
Sometimes being a good student (or a productive person in general) relies on methods that aren’t pretty.
But they work.
To learn some of the un-pretty methods I’ve used and teach to my own students (the ones that are willing, at least), go here: