Red Leaf (Jake’s Imagery Writing)

Today we finished a lesson called A Census of Senses about the science of sensations and how there are actually way more than the 5 basic senses. We both found it interesting to think about, and to end our session we went back to the basics by prompting Jake’s imagery writing with a photo of a red leaf from the Autumn Leaves book.

Jake’s finish to each prompt is in bold:

Red Leaf:

I see lovely most red color intense.

I hear how the wind is blowing the leaves bare off the trees.

I smell most how rain makes my leaves wet.

I taste really warm foods.

I feel really cooler air, most nice.

I think like autumn season, most delightful!

Jake McClintick is now 26 years old and has been learning to communicate using a letterboard since age 18. Learning the process of using a letterboard through the Rapid Prompting Method (RPM) was a gradual process that took several years. We are still working on expanding RPM and Jake’s confidence/skills beyond our “work sessions.”  Regardless, this low-tech alternative communication system has been an answered prayer for us both.

At the age of 22 he began expressing his very personal thoughts and feelings more fluently with me (his mom.) He is diagnosed with severe autism as well as intermittent explosive disorder. He has given me permission to share his story and our conversations. He continually expresses his desire to “find purpose” to his life…I hope his willingness to share will help others learn about this misunderstood condition known as “autism” that has so much to teach us all.