Wednesday, December 03, 2008

New Schools Update

So Monday was day 1 of the new schools. We had to get up with the chickens, which is before 7am, and none of us is accustomed to that. I know, I know. There are many of you who have run miles, drank coffee and done a full day's work by then, but the members of the Hall family are not of your tribe. We are morning sleepers. We stay up late and LOVE to sleep late. Gone are the days of kiddos waking at 9am. Yep, I used to have that. In bed at 9pm, sleep til 9am. No more.

Anyway, they got up and the army (me, Patty, Daddy, & Grammy) got them dressed, with breakfast, snacks & coats in hand, and off we went. It will be hard for anyone who knows me to believe this, but we were early. We dropped K & K off and Braylen had a complete meltdown. He was sad that they were gone, but he also thought he didn't get to go to "new school" which is how we are distinguishing where we are going these days. If we just say 'school' they will ask for Sue & Cherie. So we say "new school" & "new friends" and thus far it has worked.

Everyone has had a good 2 days. I think Monday was much harder on us adults than it was on the kiddos. Certainly there are some big differences, but they are adjusting. Braylen LOVES his new school and is doing great. His teachers are so sweet and they keep telling us how smart he is and that he has adapted really well. I think 4 days in a row is helping alot. He even knows some of the kids' names from his new class already.

Kyan is doing well too. He gets frustrated, but they are trying to stretch his patience, so it's just part of the process. Kynsie is doing well. Changing the routine upsets her, but again, part of the process.

The things that I don't like are that it seems so clinical. The people are nice, but it is more like therapy--it's supposed to be--and less like "let me love on you and let's play". With Sue & Cherie I always knew that my babies were getting hugs and kisses all day and that they were loved. I am hoping that I feel that way about the new place for K & K soon. I do believe that Miss Gypsie (who has cool blue hair) is a hugger. She is in Kynsie's class. Kyan's class doesn't seem too warm & fuzzy. I think it is because it is so intense.

The other thing I don't like is that with autistic kids MANY therapists use food as positive reinforcers for good behavior or following directions, etc. For example, they ask Kyan to do something. He does it. He gets a raisin. I don't like it for a few reasons. First and foremost, he is a child, not a dog. He shouldn't have to do tricks for nourishment. 2. I am not really keen on food being a reward. Our society has enough food issues, I just don't like that whole concept. 3. It isn't necessary. Saying "good job Kyan" or giving other verbal praise, clapping, etc. is enough reinforcement for him. 4. Finally--I dont like it because they seem pretty clueless about the GFCF diet. Seriously, how do people who work with Autistic kids on a daily basis NOT KNOW that gluten free/casein free diets are a HUGE benefit to kids on the spectrum??? These people should be passing out sheets with acceptable foods on day one of school, and encouraging all parents to go to a GFCF diet. Instead, they don't even know what foods are acceptable or what school supplies contain gluten. It's just weird. It's like going to heart doctor and he has no idea that eating chicken fried steak is probably a bad idea if you have heart disease.

So-I sent a box of acceptable foods with Kyan and one with Kynsie and asked them not to allow the kiddos to eat anything other than what comes from home. Hopefully they will abide by it. Otherwise, when Kyan begins losing his mind with constant tantrums, and Sis begins waking at 3am ready to party, guess who will be getting a call from Mommy?

The upside is that my kids seem incredibly verbal compared to their peers. I found out that Kynsie is in the 'high functioning' class for Autism, which was nice to know. I am not sure what class Kyan will go to from here, but I hope it is high functioning as well. One of his current class mates has no speech at all. It is just hard for me to believe that he really needs that much help. I guess time will tell.

Grammy & Grandad got the kids new backpacks for their new school and they LOVE them. So, gone are the target reusable grocery bags. now we have Dora & Diego backbacks! I will try to upload the pictures tonight and add them.


Cherie said...

I sure miss my little guys. I know they are where they need to be,but it doesn't make it easier. Missed bunches. Cherie

Cherie said...

I'm glad the kiddos are doing well I really miss them. Cherie