Week 2, Day 4
I am sleepy and going to go to bed even though it's not even 9pm. By the time I finish writing this it will be 9ish I guess. Today I saw six kids – with some speech co-treating and some assistance from my OT, but the most I've done myself. Three were legitimately mine, three just kind of happened, lol. The day was chaotic but not too bad, although I get soooo hot! I met a friend for lunch and I was burning up. All the kids below I've had multiple times now although each time I write about them they get a different name solely because of my laziness in remembering.
First I had my child who plays dumb. Let's call him Joel today since I forget what I normally call him. He is doing so much better – he can now walk into therapy without accompaniment by grandma. He only had his Mr. Horsie a single day so today I decided I'd substitute a Mr. Spider stuffed animal. That worked really well. We started with Busy Bugs where you match colorful bugs and then the spider would eat them. We also worked on pre-writing skills (vertical, horizontal lines, circles, filling in circles, etc) – by making a gridlock fence to keep out the spider, then when that failed to keep the spider out, making him a juicy caterpillar made of circles. Etc. It worked well. This little kid has a thick country accent and I find myself sounding like him when I play with him….
Second I had Tyler, a boy close in age to Joel. I decided to go the same route with him and so we worked on pre-writing skills with Mr. Spider, and also had him make a spider – I'm not a big fan of pre-made worksheets as they confuse me, so I like to make my own art projects – I had him pick out a body color and leg color, drew the legs as rectangles and body as a circle, using a thick black sharpie, then had him cut them out and glue them to another sheet of paper. We only got four legs done before running out of time, but he did well.
Third was Nancy, a girl with Down Syndrome who is very stubborn and hard to handle. My OT helped me with her session. We worked on making a spider to work on her cutting/gluing, amongst other things. Then when it was time to get in the ball bath, she got overly excited and was poorly behaved when it was time to leave and would not get out. I said fine, goodbye, turned off the lights and closed the door almost all of the way (I stood out in the hallway). That freaked her out I think, as she stepped out a minute later with her shoes on. Neither of us acknowledged what I did. But it worked well/fast!!
After lunch I saw Lana, an autistic girl who likes to say “Whoaaaaah!” a lot. She did WONDERFUL – I think she was really tired and therefore more docile. With her she has a high skill level and the main thing is just to get her to follow directions/pay attention. We worked with busy bugs and Zingo and she did GREAT. I was really pleased with her – no fighting or squirming. The big thing that is interesting though is her continued refusal to request something – we had a big go-round today over her little blue sunglasses! She would NOT ask for them in anyway and just was unhappy about it. It's really bizarre.
Then I saw a difficult low-level autistic boy, Johnny. He also did wonderful as we spent a lot of time using the tunnel with the ball bath, and he thought this was the most awesome thing on Earth. He was interacting, following directions to a basic level, laughing and playing. He got really pissed off later in the therapy room with the Lite Brite after he had done what he wanted to do and didn't want to keep going, though, LOL. He got swung a while and we did more ball work/tunnel work and he did well again. Overall he did amazing with his level of interaction when it came to the ball work. He also did some basic fine motor tasks by using magnets on a magna-doodle…getting him to do ANYTHING fine motor is great.
Then I saw a little boy who was SO cute I just wanted to eat him. He was a little black boy with braids and his name is impossible for me to pronounce. We did what I would label actual play – playing house and stuff. We – pretend – went to the grocery store, bought a ton of groceries by checking them out, flew to the house, and made dinner for babies, etc. I kept on trying to eat food out of the grocery cart and he would say NOOOO! You have to wait until later!! He was so cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute. We played house a ridiculously long time, and then I had the OT come help me try and take it further because I was kind of brain-dead. It turns out he has NO letter recognition or color recognition…but he was good at pretend and good at sequencing/logic, etc, so he is skilled in some great ways and needs some help academically.
I got to see a session my OT did with a little boy, an art therapy session to work on his self-expression. I also got to see my favorite little ADHD kid who never stops. The day flew by pretty quickly. My OT was grateful I was there since today a new OT showed up to see the place and also there was a bunch of scheduling issues that came up, so it helped I could take on some things. I like that I can do therapy with these kids and self-direct it, yet have my OT around to step in and help me out or guide me when I struggle. I am doing a little tiny bit better with firmness but I still need to keep taking it further. I am proud of myself for being creative with the kids and finding ways for it to be fun to do things like pre-writing skills (how boring is it making lines!!)….a fence to keep a spider in and biting our noses! LOL. Kids are so silly and cute.
Tomorrow we have an eval in the early afternoon and then I have my hair appointment – I'm a little worried I won't make it on time since I made the appointment with the assumption it was a normal Friday and it wasn't. Oh well. Hopefully it will work out. Anyway, today was a really good day overall…so glad I got through a 7pm Thursday….tomorrow is so short it's almost like the week is over…so two weeks down, 10 to go!!