Hi. My Name is Nathan. I have Tourette Syndrome Plus: NeurologicallyGifted.com

Tourette Syndrome Plus Class Presentation

The following is a presentation my son, Nathan and I put together for his third grade class on Tourette Syndrome Plus.  We have now laminated it and continue to use it to help all those who meet him to understand his disorder, his challenges and his own experiences with his differences.  We find the best strategy for managing how Nathan’s behaviours are viewed by others is through education.  Knowing what his differences are and why they occur reduces stress levels especially in Nathan.  Feel free to use for your class or your child.

 

“HI!  My name is Nathan and I have Tourette Syndrome Plus.”

 

 Tourette Syndrome is a neurological disorder.  That means that my brain works differently.  Mostly, my brain doesn’t tell me to stop.  It has trouble telling me to stop making noises, stop saying words and stop making certain movements.
I also have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, OCD.  These are also brain disorders where my brain doesn’t tell me to stop.  It is like my brain’s brakes don’t work properly.  Sometimes I can’t slow my brain down and sometimes I can’t stop it.  This is called an auto-inhibitory disorder.
 Tourette Syndrome and my other disorders are genetic, meaning I inherited them from my mom and dad.  They are neurochemical meaning it affects the chemicals in my brain.  Tourette Syndrome causes me to have tics.  My brain doesn’t tell me to stop making certain movements and sounds.
Some of my tics are motor tics.  These tics you see as movements I make frequently and the in the same ways.  I blow on the back of my hand, stretch my mouth, stomp my leg, bang my elbow on my thigh, throw and catch things I am holding and rub my ear to my shoulder.  These are some of my motor tics and they change from time to time.
Some of my tics are vocal tics.  These are tics you can hear as words or noises I make.  I cough, clear my throat, sniff and yelp.  I have a special sort of vocal tic called coprolalia.  Coprolalia is a vocal tic that makes me say bad words.  Most kids with Tourette Syndrome don’t have coprolalia.  I do.  I mostly say the same bad word and sometimes a few times in a row.  I know that swearing is wrong just like all of you do.  I can’t help it and knowing how wrong it is just makes it worse.  Please just ignore when they happen.

“My tics can be a pain.  I get stared at, I get in trouble, I can have a hard time writing, sometimes they hurt and sometimes I break things because of my tics.”

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or ADHD causes my brain to forget what I am doing and pay attention to something else.  Lots of times it is things that I don’t even want to pay attention to like the lights humming or flickering, the clouds outside, someone moving their foot, the clock ticking or bright colours on the board.  I get caught lots of times not paying attention to what I am supposed to.  ADHD makes me act before thinking.  I blurt out answers before being asked, interrupt people and I respond before thinking of the consequences.

“My ADHD can be a pain.  It gets me in trouble a lot and makes my friends mad for things I wouldn’t have even done, if I had a moment to think about it.”

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, or OCD, makes it hard for me to stop thinking certain thoughts.  These are obsessions and they are unpleasant, silly and annoying.  I sometimes  have thoughts about my family being sick or hurt and sometimes about germs and dirt.  OCD also makes me do certain things I don’t want to do, sometimes over and over.  I have to make things even on my left and right sides.  I have to touch, smell and lick things I don’t even want too.  And then sometimes I have to tell someone about it.

“My OCD can be a pain.  It slows me down when I want to do something else and distracts me when I want to pay attention.  It makes me do things or say things until it feels just right.”

 

Continue Reading on Page 2:  Expectations and Support

7 thoughts on “Tourette Syndrome Plus Class Presentation”

  1. i admire your courage, both of you. nathan is fortunate to have such a supportive father. have you considered listing also some of nathan’s strengths?
    best wishes to you both
    doug

    1. You are absolutely right! Nathan is reworking this presentation this year for his grade 6 class. We will see what he adds. Thank you for your comment and validation.
      Julie

  2. What a wonderful job you did on this Nathan. I am sure your information will educate many people. Not just young people, maybe even teachers and other adults that read your presentation or hear it. You are really amazing in how you are able to be so accepting and open about many involuntary conditions that you have no control over. They have just been a part of you for most of your life and you learned to live with them. They don’t define who you are, I bet you are a pretty neat guy, but you were too shy to say that!! 🙂 Some people get a blemish on their face and can’t deal with that. You have such strength. My grandson has Tourettes and some of the other conditions you mentioned. He too is strong. I will be thinking about you Nathan and believing that good things will be coming your way and your future will be bright as the most shiny light you have ever seen! Take good care and keep that chin up!!

    1. Thank you so much for your comment Loving Nana. When I shared it with Nathan I could see the pride in his face for having touched your life. He is very grateful for your comment. He really is a neat kid who has endured his challenges. You can bet I am going to be sharing your comment with him again in the years to come to remind him of his strength and positive impact on others.
      Julie

  3. That was awesome. Great job of letting your class know things about you that may of been embarrassing, and helping them understand.

  4. Very brave boy and great parents be very proud mate as I have tourettes and I’m now 32 and finding myself very hard to understand and letting too much self conscience I’m which is not what your doing your attacking it at the perfect angle all of you I jus wish I was as brave as you an look how old I am . Well done guys

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