Jabuti

Precious Isabella is now in the third grade.  Although she is still in a contained autism classroom, she takes her specials and eats lunch with the general education children.

The third and fourth graders put on a wonderful play from a book called “Jabuti the Tortoise:  A Trickster Tale from the Amazon” by Gerald McDermott.   Their music teacher wrote the music and they spent three months learning to recite, play act, and dance.

It was delightful from the moment we arrived.  A number of children greeted Isabella; she is one of them.  This is such an answer to prayer!

When the children were on stage, Bells was just as engaged as the other children.  More so, actually, as she was waving to her mom throughout!

The reason we stay in a town with especially high rents is because Isabella gets a great education.  I wish this was true for all people on the spectrum.

Diary of a Mom

As an autism gram, I depend on the autism community for support, education and knowledge.

In my first A to Z post, I mentioned Jess Wilson’s blog, Diary of a Mom. So often, when I can not figure out how to express what I want to say about how I feel, Jess says it for me in her inimitable way. We don’t always agree but I am almost always educated and most definitely respected.

Hope on over and let me know what you think. You will not be disappointed!

Awareness…nah

It’s that time again…Autism Awareness Month. Uh, I do believe that most of the people in the literate world are well aware of autism.

What we need to work on is acceptance and education.

One of my favorite autism bloggers, Jess Wilson of A Diary of a Mom, has taught me that age appropriate is just words. That is why I purchased a Baby Einstein Baby Neptune toy for my granddaughter who is eight years old. She loves it.

Jess has also taught me that wherever my girl is is just fine with me. She doesn’t have to fit in. She doesn’t have to fit a mold.

My Isabella is fun and smart and loving. She puts on a brave face all day long and, sometimes, cries at night to release all the tension she has from putting on that brave face. My girl is one of the strongest people I have ever met and I admire her grit. A

Accept people where they are at. Learn what they are all about.

Unacceptable

When a person becomes a teacher, it ought to be because they love, I mean LOVE children and desire making a positive difference in the lives of their students.

When a person becomes a special needs teacher, this love and desire to make a difference in childrens’ lives needs to be multiplied several times over.

There is no greater trust that a parent can give than for a person to spend hours of time with their child. When a child doesn’t have the ability to communicate clearly, the trust factor has to be even greater.

It is with a heavy heart that I share this:

This is unacceptable. I believe it is time to have cameras in all special needs classrooms first and then in every classroom across the country. When I was in fourth, fifth and sixth grade, I had teachers who were abusive. This was in an academically talented situation. That is why I say cameras need to be in EVERY classroom.

Who will speak out for our precious, precious children?

1…2…3…

…4…5 When I was taking education courses, a wise professor taught us to count to five slowly before calling on a student to answer a question. She explained that students process differently and it takes some longer than others to come up with an answer.

This lesson has come in very handy in grandparenting (yes, I did make up that word) a child on the autism spectrum. It seems that the brain of someone with autism doesn’t work in the same way as the average person’s. (If you like, I can refer you to some sites for further explanation.)

In the part of the northeast that we live in, we tend to be in a rush. This makes us want answers to our questions as soon as we ask them.

“What did you have for lunch in school today. Huh? What?”

This might be asked with little pause between the three questions.

I noticed that we were doing this with Isabella. After remembering what my dear professor said, I started pausing and watching my girl. I was actually able to “see” her gears turning while she processed the question.

When Bells was in pre-k, Jordan longed for her to be able to answer that simple question about lunch. Now, she can! Sometimes the answer comes easily and other times I need to prompt her. Her progress, though, is wonderful!

Whether on the autism spectrum or not, it is kind to wait on answers from those around us.

So, too, is it wise to wait before answering questions. I tend to suffer from “foot in mouth disease” because of some of my “unfiltered” comments.

The weekend is here and we are anticipating snow. I think I will sleep through it. What are you up to? g

This post is part of a blog hop at Company Girl via Home Sanctuary Why not visit?