Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A little window into her school day

Over the years Haley has had several one on one helpers in school.  She needs a one on one to help her focus on her tasks. She does a lot of things with the class, but she really isn't that good with group activities. The other reason she needs a helper is because she is a flight risk. She would walk off and not know how to come back. I hope she is getting better about this as she gets older, but when she was younger it really worried me. It is a huge relief to me to know that there is someone with her that can watch out for her, but also I think it helps Haley cope to have consistency.

Haley went to kindergarten at a school across town and then was transferred to our local neighborhood grade school for first grade.  Haley had a one on one helper for the first couple years of grade school for part of the day.  Haley was very attached to her.  She was someone who Haley really enjoyed being with and would often "talk about" when she got home.  It was very sad when she was no longer able to be Haley's one on one.  She had to leave the school because she was diagnosed with cancer.  Haley didn't know why she was gone and she asked about her for quite a while but she did get another great one one one helper after that and soon qualified for a full time one on one.

By fifth grade her teacher thought it would be a good idea to try getting Haley used to someone new so that the transition to middle school would be easier.  It worked really well.  Haley is in middle school now.  Her fifth grade one on one helper was able to transition with her so that when school started there was someone familiar to her in the classroom.  Haley seems to be doing really well in middle school. I really am happy with the teacher.  This year she has a different one on one helper, but she seemed to make the transition really well.

Haley really enjoyed sharing time in grade school. One day a week she would be able to bring something from home to share with the class. She always knew when sharing day was. One year they decided to move sharing day from one day to another. It took her quite a while to get used to that. Middle school did not have sharing day so I was a little worried how she might handle it.

I was very excited when they sent home some forms for us to fill out everyday that let them know what Haley does at home.  It is nice to be able to send the paper because she gets to "share" her home activities every day.  They also send me a form that they fill out that lets me know what goes on in school.

The form we fill out has pictures that represent the kinds of things she does at home.  There is a trike for playtime, a CD for what she might watch, listen to, or play on the computer, a picture of two parents and a child for family activities, a picture of a minivan for places she might go, a picture of a church, a picture of a funny looking little man with a hamburger and cup and straw for what she ate, a picture of a grocery cart and the word "other." 

It didn't take long for Haley to get the hang of the forms.  She is very excited to share her form from school with me when she gets home.  This form has lines for math, reading, writing, choice time, PE, cooking, field trip, speech, computer and w.c.  There is also a box at the bottom where they can write me little notes.  I love to find out what she did during the day. 

There are still mysteries though.  Sometimes she will come home with things in her backpack and no explanation as to what they are our why she has them.  She is never any help with this.  Everyday when she gets off the bus I ask her "How was school today?"  She says "Fun!"  That's all I ever get, so I feel like the forms are giving me a little window into the world of Haley's school day.

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