Steven and Sean on the Polar Bear Cam
Steven and Sean on the Polar Bear Cam

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Adjusting to Life Back at School

Lots of people have asked me how Steven's doing in school, so here goes...

Physically, he's doing well, good energy, good appetite, he looks great. His hair is growing back, he's still got a bald spot that will most likely be permanent. The weather is hot here right now and Steven is comfortable enough with himself that he goes many places without his hat and removes it in school when he's hot.

Steven's class is a very nice group of kids. There are kids that tease him, but none of them are in his class. He's pretty secure about who he is, the teasing isn't much of a problem for him.

The fact that he missed almost all of third grade is taking a toll on him, but we are incredibly proud of how he's handling things. He wanted to return to fourth grade, and seeing that he's already 10 years old, I think it was the right thing.

Fourth grade is much more difficult than third, this is the first year that I've had to give myself a refresher course before I could sit down with him and help him with his homework, I didn't remember all those notations for angles, line segments, and rays.

The school our kids attend is filled with high achievers, making it academically pretty difficult. Previous to Steven's diagnosis, he was tops in his class.

He's still doing well, but he's struggling with some things. He's actually a great writer, and he's full of wonderful ideas, but he has a difficult time putting his ideas on paper, sometimes his teacher will have him tell her what he wants to write and she writes it. Other times he seems to do pretty well with writing.

His homework, according to the school, should be taking him about 45 minutes to do every day. In Steven's case, it's been taking 2-3 hours, mostly because he gets distracted from what he's doing, by Sean and other goings-on in the house, by wanting to read his library book instead of working.

We're still figuring things out. We had wanted him to spend at least a month in school to see how he does, then we will have an IEP (special education services meeting) to see what accomodations we can make for him. We're going to have to figure out something so he's not spending 3 hours every night on homework.

The good news is that he's motivated to do his work. He wants to get caught up, he doesn't want to skip his homework, this last week was better than the week before, we're observing and helping him and trying to think of ways to make things easier for him without having him fall further behind.

He doesn't really have any good friends at school, but he doesn't seem too distressed by that. Next week I will start volunteering in his class 1-2 days a week and I can see firsthand how he's doing in that environment.

We're just so thankful that he's here with us, he's a delight to have around. The blessing and the curse of what we've gone through this last year is that we've learned to treasure every single day with our kids, we don't take a moment for granted.

-- Kathleen

For those of you that know my mother, she lost her balance in the yard while gardening last Monday and broke both of her wrists when she put her arms out to break her fall. She's got casts on both arms and can't use her hands for pretty much anything at all. She's having surgery on both wrists next Wednesday. Please hold your good thoughts and prayers for her rapid recovery.


Blogger Sleeping Beauty said...

We hope that your mothers surgery goes well. Prayers from us. (( hugs))

October 01, 2004 12:37 PM  

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