Back to school HELP BOOKS for aspergers.

Adam Harris is a friend who has AUTISM too.20140331_0059_ASIAM_Launch

He had a really good website called Aspergers Advice BUT the developed a new one – and I was invited up to make a presentation at the opening of his new one


This week they produced really good stuff for teachers and pupils and parents about being back at school.

Adam, often shares my writing for me…so i want to show these BOOKS to you for him.

by the way AsiAm is on facebook  and it has LOADS of aspie information for EVERY situation.

Book for pupils

Book for Parents

Book for teachers

and my blog on my ideas:(


blog awards ireland SHORTLISTED!



TODAY the blog awards ireland SHORTLIST is out….

and i am still nominated.

I feel very happy about being nominated…and even more happy about still being in it.

I still don’t really GET why i get nominated for these things…cos i am NOT an expert on anything – all i do is write about ME.

and I am not that interesting really!

But i am very thankful for people who keep reading – and i HOPE my experiences help them to manage a bit better.


from Fionn

BY THE WAY i don’t know if you VOTE or not or if there is someone to pick for the awards.20140722_0118_Foyle_Cup_Derry


back to school :(


or don’t know

i am not….mmmm

Emotions – i really don’t know how i feel about it. The summer has been quiet but good. Quiet cos we didn’t go abroad or do too much cos of mum having brain surgery at things like that – but we had a few trips away. We had a stay in Derry and a stay in Dublin. They were very fun!

I have still been doing tennis camps- they’re about 2 days a week for a few hours. The people at the tennis are friendly and I am very comfortable with them all.

i have had gaelic all summer – training and matches. and they have been fun. I am playing with an OLDER team now – but it is fine because there are a few others from my own team who also play in the older group. So I usually just sit beside people i know and am comfortable with on bus- and on pitch am happy enough with everyoe. So no problems there.

The rest of the summer i have been spending time with Caoilte – playing outside, watching TV, plying playstation, footballing, carrying on, messing about on the trampoline, walking to shop etc…so in SOME WAY this summer was easier than the other years. I didn’t feel there was much pressure to get used to new summer – like – no timetable…

Friends- like school friends i see some of them during gaelic and tennis and am fine when we meet there. We do chat there and mess about and have fun and all. BUT i DON’T keep in touch really cos I don’t like BBM on the iphone. Also i don’t social network – like i don’t do facebook…so i don’t really keep in touch.

BUT others haven’t been on their phones much either so i don’t really feel nervous about not having kept in touch in fact am looking forward to seeing them again :)

Classes – Am not sure if i get any different teachers this year. That’s always a “WHAT IF?” for me…like i know one or two teachers are leaving, and i don’t know WHO will be having me, or if there will be new teachers coming in. So the first day i get my timetable – i get a coloured one from the Special needs coordinator – usually he brings me in a few days earlier to get USED to my new schedule and the new people .PLUS he gives me a wee PASS CARD – one where me and 2 friends get in the canteen without queueing….and it’s AMAZING…and CERTAINLY a lot of people seem to be my friends at lunchtime! L:)

Older – Am going into year 10 or my third year of secondary school. Does that feel any more or less scary? NO…i don’t feel any different. In some ways i wish i was still second year. Its an EASY year cos nothing BIG happens.  like in first year it’s all settling in stuff…and in third year is all about preparation for GCSEs and choosing subjects.. so everyone in St Mick’s knows second year is the easiest!

Teachers – I get on WELL with all my teachers. They all get me, and i get them…and that way we get along well.

Assistant – i HOPE i have the same classroom assistant this year cos she is really good for me at this stage. Cos i don’t need babysat. Basically i need someone to look after me if i am in an “episode” which thankfully doesn’t happen very much anymore. I need someone to help me record my homework cos i am NOT GOOD at keeping track of stuff.  This year i don’t get supervised at lunchtime or break , or between classes – i just manage fine- but i know where she is if i need her.


Adam Harris is a friend who has AUTISM too.20140331_0059_ASIAM_Launch

He had a really good website called Aspergers Advice BUT the developed a new one – and I was invited up to make a presentation at the opening of his new one


This week they produced really good stuff for teachers and pupils and parents about being back at school.

Adam, often shares my writing for me…so i want to show these BOOKS to you for him.

by the way AsiAm is on facebook  and it has LOADS of aspie information for EVERY situation.

Book for pupils

Book for Parents

Book for teachers


parent to parent information…

Its Helen here,

every so often we post a bit of information that we have found helpful when moving through the process of statementing, education, transition to other schools…

They aren’t by any means rules – but we wanted everyone to realise that we too have had the fights about hours for assistants, the frustration about who does what, and nobody really told us that this is a part of a journey we ALL need to make.

We learned that :

  • Fionn is OUR child primarily – so WE care most and must push for his needs.
  • There are no classes to tell you how to engage with a professional, but be sure that YOU are the EXPERT on your child – as you have experience of them day by day.
  • No 2 children are the same – autistic or not – so one approach does not suit all children.
  • be armed with facts, samples of work, examples of your child in any meeting.
  • the only people who care for your child completely are you and your family.
  • you must lead his care, and be part of his care.
  • when his needs change YOU notice that.
  • be determined to do YOUR best for your child – as much as you ask any school, specialist to, but do it as you would for any of your children.
  • you explain HIM to the world, and translate the WORLD for him…

it’s really just being a very determined parent.

Spoke to a friend recently whose son is due to change schools soon – and i remember “interviewing ” the possible schools about what THEY could offer us…not the other way around. And that’s how it should be….

we have a son in RIGHT school – who is REALLY HAPPY there. I have to support him with bits… but he is my child – i have to do that in different ways for each of them.

so decided to repost these bits of recollections from various parts our of work in progress.

and when you are tearing your hair out some day, remember that we ALL have those days.



Fermanagh-20130314-00180we have made it THIS far – not without gnashing of teeth, and days of huge frustration – but look at the journey so far. it’s the right one!


having an older brother with aspergers.

This is Caoilte.


i am less than 2 years younger than Fionn

i am in the year below him in school.

i wrote about the pros and cons of having an aspergers brother before – BUT wondered what was am going back through it all again and updating it.




10 pros and cons of living with a brother who has aspergers


  1. Fionn is probably one of the funniest people i know in real life! – which often gets us both in hassle cos we start to laugh and when we try to stop one of us starts the other and we go off again!…so we don’t know how to stop.
  2. We both love football. now that Fionn is really able to mix with people he LOVES football so he plays it a lot. This means we play taking shots at each other or doing “crossbar challenges” all the time. He used to always be in nets but now he usually wants me to be in nets.
  3. Fionn still has his wacky sense of humour. He is into PUNS and he laughs at youtube videos. He especially likes to watch famous “fails”- but they ARE pretty funny!
  4. When mum or dad do send Fionn up to clean the room, he does basically all of it…even my share! BUT in fairness it is his fault our room is a mess. It would be impossible to share a room with Fionn without it being a mess.
  5. We still sort of like the same comedy programmes, so we don’t argue much about what to watch. I usually give in to Fionn BUT they are comedies and i do like them. We have a similar sense of humour in watching TV.
  6. Fionn says very random things that make me laugh uncontrollably! For example,if I am in the middle of a conversation Fionn might shout out a catchphrase or something completely unrelated and we both end up laughing!
  7. Because of Fionn’s blog we have got to meet some pretty cool people – at things like the Spirit of Northern ireland. And he doesn’t get how cool it is really.20140530_0020_Spirit_NI_Awards
  8. A few years ago i had to sort of mind Fionn – if we were at gaelic or something like that. if he got annoyed about people – but NOW people are really used to Fionn being Fionn, and he is much better at people, so i am off duty for now :)
  9. Fionn is never deliberately unkind to anyone, so he is always nice to me and all the family. I don’t know anyone who could NOT like Fionn
  10. we spend so much time together and THANKFULLY we get along so well together that we are almost like twins. Twins who kill each other on the trampoline, who get in trouble for talking for hours, who spend all day kicking ball AT each other, pushing each other down hills and LAUGHING! until one of us crashes into the fence or something…

Cons -

  1. when we are picking what to do, or even what DVD to put on, what show to watch, what games to play or whatever i think it is impossible to refuse Fionn cos he keeps whining on and on about his idea until i give in. So now i don’t even really bother arguing
  2. with him i am expected a bit to be the older person, who does the sensible things all the time! Especially with independent things like coming into the house before mum and dad. I would be the one who keeps the key. He can still lose money easily so if we are going somewhere together I usually do the money and he is quite happy.
  3. our bedroom is a mess – mainly thanks to Fionn. He is so disorganised. BUT i kinda get away with my bits of the mess cos the whole room is a mess. it is just how our room is now. 
  4. sometimes when we are getting a lift with another parent, Fionn gets kinda anxious and he can’t stop talking. kinda talking uncontrollably and usually about his interests – like TV shows. I TRY to get him to stop but the more nervous he is the more he yaps.
  5. Fionn keeps stealing my favourite football tops and stretches them – especially my under-armours! No change to this one – Fionn loves his clothes too tight like they are compressing him-  he likes that.
  6. Fionn freaks on about hygiene to me. He won’t talk in the mornings til he has his teeth done. He has to keep on at me cos mine are the last thing i do. But he keeps on about my breath stinks…and that i should shower more… (i do not smell!)
  7. when i am in the middle of concentrating on something the next thing you hear is Fionn chatting. Mum has to help Fionn revise work and do homework and it is quite annoying if i need her too!
  8. When i am still wide awake and want to chat to him, he will fall straight asleep…which is really weird cos Fionn used to have massive trouble falling asleep especially if we had music on with words in it! This is still a problem. but usually in school holidays we watch a DVD and i manage to fall asleep during it.
  9. He can be lazy and doesn’t like walking to the shop…and I love to. I don’t know why he can’t be bothered COS we do go the shop if we are walking home from tennis or something. But he can’t be bothered STARTING something or doing something that is unplanned.
  10. He has a really really short attention span and still has problems not cutting across what you are saying with his “look at this” kinda thing . So i do get frustrated -a lot! 

Overall he is STILL a pretty nice guy! And a nice brother to have.

We  don’t need to have friends over cos we are so good together!DSC_0212

His Aspergers makes him really funny – and he knows it.

I like having a brother with aspergers.

Cos i have to be the sensible one, its kind of like I am older, so we may as well be twins as brothers!

you are cool Fionn



PS:  it is still quite tough sometimes to help Fionn out now, but it was a lot worse when he was younger because he has developed a lot of social skills now thankfully!


Helen here… Caoilte has been promising this blog for a while… but Fionn is SO LUCKY to have a brother who supports him, understands him, gets on with him as much as Caoilte does. They are definitely best friends….and a torture to settle at night! photo 1 (13)


Temple Grandin POSTED MY BLOG!

Temple Grandin posted my BLOG


She is the coolest person and she has ASPERGERS.

and if she ever comes back to IRELAND i would love to meet her when i amn’t sick!

it was this blog


am really chuffed! i had knew  she was mad into cows – she can understand animals so well – maybe easier than people. So mum got a friend to make her a cow brooch. It is “baked in Belfast” and it is a piece specially made for Temple. She wears cow pins and badges…i hope mine stayed on!brooch



14yr old Fionn Hamill blogs on meeting Dr. Temple Grandin

why i love Temple Grandin’s ideas on Aspergers
i have ACTUALLY MET TEMPLE GRANDIN! I was so excited when i knew i was able to meet Temple Grandin. I had never met anyone so famous. Or anyone who i looked up to so much! I was so so excited. She …

It WAS a sting . it is CELLULITIS!

Is this a STING? I wrote this two days ago…

yesterday i was at tennis.

i noticed a wee white bump on my arm about the size of a pea.

a wee bit raised…and a wee red dot at the centre.

so i guessed it was a sting of some sort.

BUT IT DIDN’T HURT… it itched a bit through tennis.

By the time i got home it wasn’t noticeable at all.

I told mum about it last night and she said – definitely not a sting – cos they are PAINFUL…so i guessed it was just nothing.

just something weird.

Then this morning i found THIS GINORMOUS LUMP on my arm
sting1it wasn’t sore but was EXCEPTIONALLY itchy and hot to touch!.

So mum though i must have got a sting after all. And as usual for an aspie- i didn’t feel the PAIN like a normal person would.

Mum gave me antihistamine tablet and ointment…now after about 6 hours it is thissting2

oh and it’s still not at all painful.

by Fionn

when it didn’t get better that day it got BIGGER…cellulitis3NOW we went to the doctor…mum was asking

is it sore? NO

is it itchy? NOT ANY MORE

does it feel tight? WHAT DO YOU MEAN?

how does it feel? JUST HOT AND WEIRD.

 so the doctor was very nice . He said it is CELLULITIS- you get it from a insect bite or a sting that gets infection into your body. So have a drawing on it and a big antibiotic 4 times a day. And we have to keep sure it doesn’t go way outside the drawing or that i don’t start to feel bad.

cellulitis2IMG_9001 (1)


SO FAR I AM FINE…it feels hot but kinda nice hot…and smooth…and sometimes itch…and not sore. :)

by Fionn