Friday, August 30, 2013

End of "summer holidays"

This is the last week of my son's "summer holidays", a term I use, as his school follows the British academic year.

It also means that he has completed Year 2 and will move on to Year 3. It feels like time is simply zooming past very fast, too fast, sometimes. It is still a race against time, for him to continue to progress in his gross motor, fine motor, speech... everything.

His class teacher is happy with his progress in Year 2. He was able to carry on with his work independently. Teacher says he understands what's being taught. He has classmates that were helpful and even a girl that fancied him. : D

However, there are so many areas that concern me. It's hard for him to write stories, stories that have a beginning, middle and end, with characters and setting, a problem and a resolution. There are many levels involved and each level seems to be a challenge - creativity, visualization, thought planning, structuring, legible handwriting.

In maths, he understands concepts like multiplication and division but has difficulty in deciphering word problems. Again, I think it's to do with visualization of the problem. Also, when I do not revise a maths topic with him for sometime, he forgets (e.g. telling time).

Self care skills are progressing and I'm comfortable in that area. There are still assistant teachers assigned to be shared between two classes that will be able to help him get ready for PE (swimming, gym etc).

It's hard to strike the right balance when there are so many areas to look into. What I've written is just a fraction of the many areas. It's like trying to juggle many balls when I'm not a skilled juggler. For example, I've cut down on his time spent reading for the past few months to focus on other areas. Now I realize he has lost his stamina when reading. He'd only want to read one page per session compared to the past where he'd read many pages in one sitting.

But this month long holiday has been good. I made a schedule of areas to cover on a daily basis and award him stars when completed. Earning a certain number of stars will enable him to "redeem" a gift.

I had also signed him up for intensive physio therapy at Amir's Gym. It's brought about good results. They worked on his breath (for speech), posture, strength, co-ordination.

I can feel his arm muscles and leg muscles! He looks fit and strong too, kinda buffed up! He'll need that as his Year 3 class is on a floor up (more stairs to climb!) and school hours are longer.

He's been a chatter box this past week, which I absolutely love! He'll need to speak more to his friends and express himself more, because as they grow up, play time gets more sophisticated. It's also been stated as one of his goals by the SENCO, to talk more in full sentences.

He's progressed in his inline skating too. The therapist in Amir's Gym had built up his core muscles and trained him to put his weight forward when walking. He has a tendency to arch backwards (CP trait) which worsens his lordosis. He's now able to move, albeit slowly, in his skates. I had tears in my eyes when he first managed to go round the park in his skates. Although I wouldn't yet say he CAN skate, it is promising.

Despite all the hard work he's put in this holidays, he's still a happy boy. He's very happy with all the Lego City vehicles that he "redeemed". He had a good break too visiting his grandparents and ate very well.  He enjoyed 3 movies - Turbo, Planes, Smurfs 2.

When told that he has only 3 more days left of the holidays, he was momentarily sad that the holidays are almost over, but then cheered up because it meant school was starting soon. Really blessed to have a happy boy, a good school, and good therapists to support him! Here's to a fantastic Year 3!