Teaching Robert

One day Robert, two years and six months old at that time, wanted a drink.  His small hands were too weak to tilt a full large bottle of Welch’s White Grape Juice to the side to pour the juice into a cup.  As Robert held the heavy bottle in his hands, he tried to move it in all directions.  He noticed that it was much easier to tilt bottle  toward his mouth.  So he did just that.  He pour the juice into his mouth and then discharged it INTO the cup.  After that he drank the juice from the cup.

He did this only once as he must have immediately discovered that he could simply drink straight from the bottle.

This episode happened more than 17 years ago. Yet it demonstrates better than anything else issues that impacted Robert’s development, his learning processes, and his difficulties in life.

Firstly, he solved his problems cleverly.  Because of that one event I always knew that he was smart and capable of learning and thinking.  No matter what his IQ was like and what I was told about his capacity for learning I knew he could learn.

Secondly, I knew that he went through all that trouble without asking for help because he couldn’t ask.  He couldn’t communicate.  I am not sure if  he even had an idea that we, his parents, could be asked to help…

Every day Robert demonstrates to me how much he can learn, how much he can do.

But he still  cannot explain himself.

So I am here to attempt explaining him.

He is unusual human being.  Very much worth knowing.

Maria Hrabowski

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