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From Inside the Puzzle: Raising a Child with Autism Blog

From the Archives: Progress Reports and Notebook Scribbles

Published October 28, 2012 10:42 PM by Devon Alley

In this entry from the archives, I share some of the progress that my daughter is making in school, along with snapshots from her artistic notebook drawings.

January 7th, 2005:

This afternoon, my daughter had her backpack stuffed full of grade cards and IEP progress reports and the like. She spends two hours in a regular Kindergarten class (joins in for the morning social routines and basic writing exercises) after which she spends the rest of her day in the specialized preschool classroom, where they work on her fine motor skills and speech therapy and basic social instruction and the like.

Here's the note her regular Kindergarten teacher sent home with her:

"A. has made improvements in many areas this grading period. I am very proud of her! She is continuing to adapt to the expectations of the kindergarten classroom and is beginning to work more independently.

I have seen a great deal of progress in her social skills. She is beginning to engage in short dialogue with others and is responding more appropriately when spoken to. I have also observed her initiating conversations with her peers and, on a few occasions, working or playing cooperatively with them. She has formed several friendships with her classmates.

A. continues to enjoy our morning routine, which includes calendar and story time. She is very willing to participate during group times and does a great job. She has also started participating in the question of the day and independent work activities. Her work is not always completed correctly, but it is progress that she is making the effort. This work along with the isolated practice she does is also improving her fine motor skills. She will hold a pencil correctly if given a reminder.

I would like to see A. continue to progress in all of these areas. She is a very bright and capable child and I am enjoying watching her learn."

In her specialized preschool class, they've implemented this process of sending home a coloured cardboard crayon to represent their behaviour for the day; today, A. brought home a green crayon, which means "good." I praised her, and taped it to the wall, explaining that as soon as we had five green crayons, I'd take her to the park. She seems incredibly excited about the prospect, so... we'll see how it goes.

Just for the curious, here is a peek inside A.'s notebook:

When asked to explain what Carlo is, A. simply responded "is Carlo." Also, Mr. Balloon is often rather shifty-looking in her drawings (these are all reoccurring characters that she's filled her notebook with) but here A. tells me that Mr. Balloon is getting a balloon for A.-Rabbit, so I suppose he's all right.

posted by Devon Alley
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