That’s about all you hear over here since i seem to be constantly busy! I have been volunteering at my son’s school in order to stay involved in that area of his life. We have made some changes in D’s life. We have pulled him out of preschool. It was such a hard decision, but what it came down to was that he wasn’t learning really anything. After being present for 2 years worth of speech therapy sessions for J, D can recite the whole alphabet, write most of it, count to 100 and tell time. It is scary how much this 3 year old can do. So putting him in preschool wasn’t really necessary like it was for J. J needed the social interaction to help with his speech, D isn’t facing these issues. Since we are both adament about having the kids in a daycare, it really felt like that is what we were doing each month. He seems happier being at home, although he does say “there’s my school” as we pass it on the way to the store. We will enroll him in the 4year old program to get him ready for being in a school setting next year.
We have gotten some homeschooling supplies at home as i am doing a little bit of that on the side so to speak. I work with J on the weekends to help with things that he is confused about in school. I have had the accessment meeting with J’s teacher and the school’s speech therapist was there. It was a good meeting although the teacher really had no concept of how long these meetings should take and scheduling 30 minutes for a meeting like this was not enough. We went an hour and there was still topics to cover. Bottom line though i re-enforced that J is a VISUAL learner and has a harder time completing tasks based off just oral commands. I am working on this with him and he is getting better. it isn’t that he doesn’t understand, he does, it is that he has problems seeing what you expect of him out of what you said. She also mentioned that he was having problems when she puts something on the board, getting it on paper. His eyesight is fine, it is more of a visual processing thing. So i have been working with him on this. The great news was that they didn’t feel that he needed to go through the IEP testing and receive therapy. While he does need some assistance, they believe that he can stay in Tier 1 and that would mean that it would be up to me and the teacher rather having to put him through all the testing. J does not test well. Once he figures out it is a test, you can’t get anything out of him. He just shuts down. Each quarter they have an assessment and it involves knowing letters, upper and lower case and the sounds and then rhyming and some other things. Well he got through the upper and lower case letters fine, but even though the assessment is done over the course of 2 weeks, he stopped doing any of it once they got to the sounds. Even though we know he can do it, unfortunately he has to do it right at the time of assessment. This is sure going to mean a lot of fun for the up and coming years. Especially since once you get to 3rd grade everything is based off the standard testing, that’s all they teach.
For that reason alone i have started doing some teaching outside of what he learns in the class. I feel like there is so much i want him to learn and to be restricted to just what they are testing on as far as learning is so disappointing to me. I remember school a lot differently and i remember while we had end of the year tests, that wasn’t all you learned for the year. I think it is unfair. Right now it is basic stuff to help him with rhyming and math since these are areas that are hard for him to understand. I have a few ideas for some science fun that i think he will enjoy. We always enjoy going to places that involve learning or hands on activities so i am hoping to add to his education by keeping this up. His teacher and the therapist is all for this as he is really making a lot of improvements in the classroom. I get to see him once a week in the class, but i don’t know that it is a true representation of how he is. Everytime he sees me he acts like i am there because he is in trouble. Not true, but i am finding it helpful and am able to point out some things to the teacher that she is missing and that help him in class.
She was trying to be helpful by moving kids around and giving him new people to sit by. J’s teacher felt like he was focusing mainly on one boy, but what she doesn’t know is that J will make friends through this boy. That is what he did at home and has a ton of neighborhood kids to play with now. However, the teacher didn’t understand this and moved the boy and put someone else in his place. J feels like he is being punished and as a result has stopped speaking or participating in the class. He is withdrawing into himself again and this is the opposite of what i wanted. I understand what she was trying to accomplish, but she assumes that J will understand this and these dynamics J doesn’t understand. Frustrating because he is so very shy and it takes a lot to get him to open up.
Other than that i am still pregnant, big surprise. This is another big baby. They estimate after the gazillion ultrasound i have had to have, that the baby is measuring 2 1/2 weeks ahead of schedule and is probably 2 pounds by now. I will have another intensive scan in December to check the fluid in the brain since they felt the levels were high the last time we were in. This would mean surgery when the baby is born to put a shunt in to reduce the fluid levels.I am working on trying to build some inventory up to put on my Etsy store to add to our savings for when i am out on maternity leave. We did have a good bit saved, but then M’s car required about 2 grand worth of work and that was pretty much all we had. So we are living paycheck to paycheck right now. Gas prices may have gone down which has helped, but we don’t eat out, I cook from scratch and use organic (and local when i can) and we go through about 10 gallons of milk every two weeks. It typically adds up! Even buying what we can in bulk, but you would be amazed at how few things you can buy in bulk food wise when you don’t feed your kids sugary snacks and apples rot after a week and a half generally and bananas, don’t get me started on those!!! I swear they can enter our house green and by nightfall be brown. Of course with buying in bulk we have a space issue too and while we have a separate freezer, it is pretty much full right now as i have been stocking up on the local grown veggies for the winter.
Goodness, i bet my school friends never thought i would travel down this path. 🙂