J's hands and feet show a degree of hyperflexion which make some tasks difficult for him but which as I constantly remind him do not stop him trying. One of the things the paediatrician who saw J was certain about was that he would never make a ballet dancer - a fact which was no surprise to me given J's clumsiness. This fact was also a considerable relief to his Ba-pa in Wales who dreaded any idea of J becoming the first male dancer in the family.
So - just after the school returned to normality last week J returned home with a printed flyer about dancing classes to be held in the assembly hall every week from 3-4.... and J wanted to go. Naturally he did not want to attend last term when they were free but this term when they are £20 (which for 10 weeks of lessons is not bad) he does want to join in - typical. And so last night J attended the first class and I waited for him to return home saying he had hated it.
I returned to the school to collect J several minutes early and this gave me a bit of time to watch the dancing class through the window. Many of J's classmates were there and a surprising number of boys too who were naturally all competing to outdo each other in the dance session. I noted that M who is J's little girlfriend was there too.... and partnered up with J - holding his hand and giving him a prod now and then to ensure that he kept up with the routine.
J appeared to be thoroughly enjoying the session and the only blip was when a loud part of the dance came along which involved shouting and clapping. When this bit came I observed J fall to the floor with his hands over his ears to protect them from whatever sound was bothering him. M didn't blink an eyelid and merely danced round J - stepping over him and continuing with her bit of the routine - evidently she is used to his funny little ways. After a few moments and when the noise had subsided J was up and taking part again - it was good to see him happy and enjoying the rhythm of the music.
The dance teacher says that J has good rhythm and that within a few weeks he will know the routine (and I am certain M will make sure he knows it too). For his co-ordination it will be great - he needs to both watch and listen to learn the routine which will require a certain amount of concentration. Only good can come from this activity and I will be watching how he does to see if there are external benefits in other areas..
And just for his Ba-pa if he reads this there is a picture below,