I got to go see Joey at school again today- this time with his morning teacher, Mrs. H. She's a very different kind of teacher from Mrs. S, and is doing different things- and that's good. Between the two of them, we have a compliment of skills and styles that is really doing great things for my Joey.
We've noticed lately that Joey is tossing out a lot of word salad. His sentences and speech include words that are relevant to the topic, strung randomly together. This may seem like a complaint, but it isn't. We notice it more because he is talking more- and talking more is good. Relevant words are good. And the salad is because he is not echoing those words, but trying to construct his own speech. He has an easier time with it when he's calm and focused- more salad when he's excited or frustrated or tired- but the words are out there.
Joey greets his classmates by name. He even tries to greet his Sunday School classmates by name- before they greet him. Initiation is good (shame it isn't often positively reinforced by other kids).
Joey is answering questions. Not always correctly, or even willingly, but the answers come out. He was especially frustrated today because he was working on sequencing a set of story cards, and then narrating the story. He got the cards sequenced (YAY!) but then got frustrated with the narrative. It was like, "I got the things in the right order, what more do you want?" he was done and wanted to move on to something else, instead of finishing up the details. He knew what the story was and what it was about, and didn't want to expend energy telling us what he knew we already could plainly see. But he got through it. He did it.
He's reading on a first-grade level. We know from the software the school uses for special ed and ESL language teaching that his receptive auditory processing seems to be quite good- he can differentiate sounds and match them and that sort of thing. His receptive language is really coming along. Now, we just need that expressive language... apraxia, hie thyself to the hills!
Katie McCarron would have been in school today. She probably would have been able to circle the "pl"s in the poem Mrs. H read. Perhaps, like my Joey, she would have gotten frustrated with the card sequencing- perhaps the sequencing itself would have been a problem? Or the narrating? Then, like my Joey, she may have turned to a computer software game or a favorite activity for her break. Had she lived here, she would have lunched early, because the Russian ballet was coming for an afternoon assembly- I bet she would have liked to try to dance, in a pink dress and a flower in her hair, just like the pretty ballerinas did at school. After all, Katie would be a kindergardener this year.
Thinking of you, Katie.