Saturday, October 1, 2011

We made it through September!

Yesterday was the last day of the month - and we made it!  We have all been back in school for at least 4 weeks and the house is still standing.  With one exception due to an unexpected doctor's appointment, everyone has made it to work or school ontime!  No one had to take a sick day (watch, next month there will be 5) and despite a minor cold for me and allergic reactions to mosquitoes for Cha-cha, we were healthy!  I call that success!

My school year is going well - I'm loving the transition to a lower grade and I really love my students.  I love their excitement and enthusiasm.  They get excited about the littlest things and I love that!  I'm enjoying my new team and they have made the transition so easy for me.  I have never been this organized in my 9 years of being a classroom teacher - granted, I had a brand new empty classroom to start with - but they are so on top of photocopying and planning that I never feel like I'm flying by the seat of my pants or rushing to get things done.

Bee-bee is doing well in school - maybe a little too well...I went in to talk to her teacher about her and one of the things I mentioned is that she is a little bored of the school work.  Thankfully, the K screening is this week and I'm hoping they are going to be able to differentiate lessons so she is challenged.  Sadly, no one signed up for the art class she wanted to take, so it was canceled, but she is signed up for Daisys and if no one steps up to be the troop leader, I'm going to do it.  I feel bad as she needs something to look forward to and she doesn't want to do dance, she can't do soccer until the spring, and we missed the boat for swim signups.  She is making friends and has a best friend in her class already - her mom and I are playing phone tag, but we hope to get the girls together for a playdate soon.

And then we have Cha-cha...this has been a good month for him in a lot of ways.  He has gone from sitting by himself and hanging out with the teachers during outside time, to running and chasing the kids in their unorganized tag/chase games.  When he wants to join in on an activity, he points to himself and yells, "Me!" and rarely gets a teacher to help him join in.  His language is making progress in many ways.  He doesn't have too many new words, but he's using his old words more and more.  Recently we've heard a few 2 word utterances such as, /ma-ma coo/, /bee-bee coo/, and /cha-cha coo/ for Mama's school, Bee-bee's school, and Cha-cha's school.  He also has said /shz uh/ for shoes off and the other night we heard /go ca peaz/ for go car please, when he wanted to go for a ride.  He is learning his colors and can say in his own way, yellow, purple, blue and pink.  His new greeting is the French version of hello - /allo/ - it is freaking hysterical, even when he's suppose to be going to sleep and he pops up and yells, "Allo!"  It constantly makes hubby and I laugh.

An exciting thing happened this week too during his EI SLP session - she came in with the OT and we were chatting, Cha-cha pulled out some of her toys and started scripting his own play with a ball toy - saying /up/, /go/, /duh/ for down, and /eh/ for in with no prompting.  Then he took out the farm animals and started making them eat saying /num-num/ and saying some of their sounds without prompting...his SLP burst into happy tears and said, "I've never seen him do that on his own without any prompting!"  Of course, this is something we've been working on with him for over a year now - and he can finally do it on his own.

Of course, then you have setbacks...we are currently in a sleeping hell with Cha-cha - he won't stay in his toddler bed and he won't stay asleep.  For the first two weeks of school with all the craziness, we were sitting outside his bedroom for a good 2 hours and were getting nowhere.  We drive him around to get to sleep and he wakes up an hour later (at 11pm).  If he happens to fall asleep and we move him to his bed, by 3am he is up and wanting to come to our bed.  It was never our intention to have him sleep with us - but we were desperate - we all needed to get more than 5 hours of sleep a night - and now we've created a small monster.  On top of that, we've seen his sensory issues go to another extreme at night - it's almost like we spend all day long getting his motor running, that in the evening, you can't stop him.  He tosses and twirls and flips in his bed - he's wired.  Thankfully, we are starting sessions with an OT next week and we're going to be looking at some brushing techniques to see if that will help calm his motor at night, as well as looking into a weighted blanket for him.

Another issue is that he's not excited to see his therapists come to his school.  When his Developmental Specialist, who he has seen since he was 7 months old, comes to daycare he runs to the door and tells her to "Go!" and "No!" and "Bu-bye!"  Eventually he will work with her, but he's very slow to warm up.  Same with his SLP - he's starting to tell her to "Go" and doesn't want to work with her.  His outside SLP, when she pushes him, he pushes back and tells her to "Move" and "Go"  Granted, we're excited that he's communicating his wants, but at the same time, it makes everyone wonder if we're pushing him too much.  I would say that at least 50 minutes out of the hour sessions, he's working and enjoying himself - so for 10 minutes of discomfort for everyone, he does get into things and is laughing and playing for the rest of the time.

Now we're on to a new month - we're going to keep doing the things we're doing in terms of therapy with Cha-cha and add some OT to see if we can keep things going in the right direction.  We're going to try to let him cry it out for sleep so we can have our bed back.  I'm going to start a homeschool math curriculum with Bee-bee to try to challenge her.  We're going to enjoy the fall weather and do apple picking and fun fall things. 

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