I have a little first grade boy with autism on my caseload. Let's call him Tommy (I know I've written about him before, but I can't remember what fake name I gave him!). Tommy has a full time aide to help him successfully mainstream in his general education classroom. You should also know that Tommy has a very powerful imagination and he will frequently make up stories or exaggerate what is going on.
Yesterday, Tommy came to school with mosquito bite on his forehead. This, of course (as anyone who works with kids on the autism spectrum might know), was devastating. It completely paralyzed him from getting any of his morning work done. Miss W (his aide) decided that some quiet time in his bean bag chair with an ice pack on his head may be just the cool down time he needed in order to start his day. So there he was, holding a blue bean-bag-type of ice pack on his head, calming down. Miss W was sitting off to the side with her back to him as she completed some paperwork.
Suddenly, Tommy says: "The ooze monster is here! The ooze monster is here!!"
Miss W responds (without turning around): "We're not telling stories today, Tommy. Please sit quietly while your classmates are working"
One minute later, Tommy pipes up again: "No, Miss W, I'm SERIOUS! The OOZE MONSTER IS HERE TO GET ME!"
Miss W finally turned around, and when she did, she saw that the ice pack had exploded and there was indeed OOZE all over the poor kid's face and shirt!
And that is why SOMETIMES we should take kids seriously....