Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Another IEP

Last week my husband and I attended a meeting with Haley's teacher "B" to discuss her Individualized Education Program (IEP) at school. 

Her teacher instructed us to call him B, because it is easier for his students to say.

The IEP meeting is a time when we can help the teacher figure out how and what to teach her.  Each child gets their own IEP and so the teacher has very specific things to focus on for all of the kids in his class.  Haley's teacher is young and enthusiastic.  He has high hopes for Haley, as do we.

We discussed some of the things that were previously on her IEP and how she has achieved them.  Some we can remove because they no longer apply, like those geared more to her Middle School experience. 

She is in High School now, so her learning is changing.

One of the things that will be changing is that she will be in an "apartment program."  The Special Education department has set up one of their classrooms to be an apartment.  They have a kitchen, a dining room, a living room and a bed.  Haley will be "in the apartment" for a week.  She will be paired with another student in the apartment and she will have her one-on-one with her.  While there she and her partner will plan all of the meals, do all of the shopping and cooking and cleaning up.  She will even get to go to a "job."

I am excited about this program.  Not only will she be able to learn how to take care of herself, but I can watch!  They have an area that I can come in to without Haley being able to see me.  I will be able to observe her in action.  I am planning on going in after she has had a chance to get familiar with the apartment.

While we were talking about what she will learn I realized that I haven't been teaching her to do many of the things that she will be learning.  I tend to take care of her.  I don't expect her to be self-sufficient. 

I will be learning as well.

Her teacher asked us what kinds of things we would like him to teach her.  We talked about recognizing signs around the school (like the exit signs) and what to do if she sees the sign.  We talked about learning who to go to for help.  The teacher pointed out that she is never alone, which is a good thing, but we still want her to know the other teachers, the secretaries, the principal and security guards.

The speech therapist was there too.  It is always a bit disheartening to talk to a new speech therapist.  This one at least knows that she can speak, but because she is still in her shy mode he doesn't know how well she can speak.  We told him some of the things that she says at home and his eyes got big.  He hasn't heard any of it. 

He has been working with her to just say "Yes" and "No."  We told him that she says "yeah" instead of "yes" and that we have only heard her say "no" once.  We told him the story.

He wants to determine what she knows by showing her cards with pictures on them of household items.  He showed us the cards.  We agreed that she probably didn't know the things on the cards.  It was a bit embarrassing for us.  Haley knows a lot of things.  She can recognize every animal, all kinds of vehicles, more trains than most human beings and everything Disney related, but she wasn't recognizing toothbrush, comb, hair brush, and soap. 

We don't talk about the day to day things in our house I guess.  I don't know why.  It was very weird to realize that. 

Lately she has been curious about what I am doing when I make dinner.  I have been explaining my processes and what I am using.  I guess I need to do a lot more of that.

The IEP meeting is for the teacher to determine what Haley needs to learn.

Apparently it is also for her parents to learn the same thing.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that apartment at the school sounds awesome! I love that you can go watch whenever you want to, and that she won't know you are there. That's nice, so you can see with your own two eyes just how she would handle things without you there. I'm glad it went well and that you learned a few things too. It's always good to learn things, right?



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