Finally On The Right Track


finally on the right track

After years of of meetings, aggravations, and fighting, AJ finally has the services he should have gotten years ago. He was denied speech services after he aged out of Birth to Three services. In Connecticut the school district then takes over at this point and assign one elementary school to handle these preschool meetings. At this meeting, I was told his speech issues would go away naturally. He was denied OT services numerous times when he was in daycare all through his third and fourth years. They claimed he did not qualify, but gave pages upon pages of activities and resources the daycare teachers could do to help AJ. The daycare was amazing they did all they could, but even they knew AJ needed extra support they could not provide. If he had all those recommendations and needs, why not just give him services? It’s simple really, he wasn’t in their school and wasn’t their issue so they didn’t have to deal with him. When he did start kindergarten he would be at another elementary school in the district so he would never be their problem. It made no difference that I was a special education teacher and reading specialist in NY, they didn’t want to give out resources and time to a kid that would never be their problem. They should all be ashamed of themselves.

Now that he’s in kindergarten that has all changed. I am truly happy with the school and how they have responded to my son’s needs.

First it started with AJ having a 504 plan and getting OT two times a week, then daily breaks and brushing have been added on to his plan. He’s getting speech and reading services to help him with his phonemic and phonological deficits, they will both use a multisensory program to improve his decoding and encoding. He is also going to meet with the school psychologist for a group social skills session once a week. His IEP will begin the rest of this year and continue for 2015-2016 school year. As of right now he is classified as learning disabled since they are not sure if his attention difficulties are due to his sensory issues or ADD. When we go for his annual doctors’ appointment, we can discuss all this with doctor. We will wait and see if the doctor wants to do an assessment for ADD or tell us to wait till September.

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I am not crossing dyslexia off the table yet. AJ is very smart and I’m not just saying that because I’m his mother. He understands and expresses vocabulary above his grade level, he loves to read (what do you expect from a mom who is a reading specialist), can answer both literal and inferential comprehension questions, make predictions, describe characters, and summarize text, His deficits are in the areas of phonemic and phonological awareness. What is that you ask. Well HERE is a great explanation.

I know first hand what happens when students are not given the support they need. Students who are given services too late, struggle in the later years and will never catch up to where they are supposed to be academically.

This describes AJ now, he spends all his energy on trying to sound out and write letters, that his amazing stories are getting lost in the frustration. If this is happening now in kindergarten, what will happen when he’s in third and fourth grade and he still can’t properly read the words on the page or write down what he expressed aloud. Now with reading support focusing on a multisensory program, we will see if and how AJ improves.

AJ will also be getting summer services for the month of July, this will effect the time he spends at daycare summer camp. I know he will be upset about missing field trips on Thursdays, but he really needs support over the summer. I will try to get him back to daycare camp in time for swimming and horseback riding. It’s not his fault the previous school did not do their job and give him the services he needed; but AJ needs extra time to catch up. Summer school is only three days a week, three hours each day for four weeks. After that he will have all of August to enjoy summer camp. I’ll make sure I have fun activities planned on the weekends.

What are your kids doing this summer?

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I know I’m taking a big risk posting about this. There are people who will judge, tell me what I should have done differently, or just send negativity my way. I say go for it if it makes you happy. Their negative vibes will have no effect on me. I know AJ and I have love and support that outweighs any negativity. Besides, I own the domain, therefore this is my blog and I can post whatever I choose. I want to be honest and open with my readers, I want to share our struggles and joys.

Do your kid(s) receive support services? Was it a battle or did the distinct
provide services immediately?

Great resources

This Week I Read…

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The Bully from the Black Lagoon


    

We bought through the Scholastic Reading Club at our school. Click HERE to check it out. Does your school have one? What books have you bought your kid(s)?

Amazon Summary:

Hubie has heard there’s a new kid in school. His name is Butch Pounder, and he is rumored to be a mean bully! Did Butch really beat up the football team and eat the teacher’s pet at his last school?

Hubie thinks he’ll end up in the nurse’s office, when he finally runs into Butch. But, of course, Hubie’s imagination has run away from him again! All Butch wants is a new friend to show him around school, and Hubie is just who he needed!

AJ’s Review:

He thinks the new kid is going to beat him up, eat him, and throw him away. He is scared of the bully. Bullies are not nice, but he’s not a bully. He’s a good guy and wants to be friends. I’m nice to everyone and like to make friends. 

Mommy’s Review:

Very cute book about a boy who misunderstands what he hears about the new kid or hears rumors. Hubie works himself into a frenzy thinking of horrific and devastating things the bully can do to him. In the end, the new kid is nothing like what he heard he would be…he’s jut a new kid looking to make friends. 

Teaches a great lesson…never judge someone before you meet them. 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

What are your kids reading? 

New Experiences and Challenges

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Challenges

This past Sunday, for Mother’s Day I ran walked the Run Like A Mother 5k and AJ did the 1 mile for kids. What an experience it was, wish I had done that sooner. This was my first time attempting anything of the sort. At one point I almost cried. It wasn’t because I couldn’t do it, it was the overwhelming power of the moment. Just looking up and seeing all the kids in their blue shirts and all the women, moms, daughters, sisters, aunts, grandmas, and friends in their pink shirts. What a sight it was. I could feel it in the air and I am so proud to have been a part of it.

I walked the 5k in 55 mins! For me that is darn good. Next year my goal is to jog it in 45 minutes, if I do better than that is great. Even AJ is excited for next year. He said he will practice running so he can run with the big guys. I think he wants to challenge himself to run faster as well!

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I recently learned how to effectively tie my sneakers when running walking. I never paid attention to this extra hole and really could have used this for my 5k. I tried it and it’s AMAZING, it really works. I didn’t have the irritation above my heel or on my pinky toe! Even the bottom of my heels didn’t hurt as much. Did you already know about this?

NEW BOOKS

What do you listen to when you exercise? Music used to be my motivation for long commutes and exercise, now it’s a good book. I don’t own an iPod, but with Audible I can listen to any book, anytime, and anywhere. All you need is the Audible app and an Amazon account. You simply download the book and listen till your heart’s content. Want to know what books I’m reading and read my reviews? Do you post about your book reviews? If you do you can link them up every Monday. Here’s my latest book review and linky.

Sign In to Audible        bookreviewbutton-2

I still borrow CD books from the library, we should all take advantage of that. Though they may be cutting back on CDs they can send from other libraries to your library. Did you know you could do that? If your branch doesn’t have the book you want, you can go onto bibliomation and have the book sent to your branch when it’s available. Not sure what to do, just ask a librarian. Neat, right? Well, I really hope they don’t cut back on that, but afraid they will.

Each new book brings on a new journey, a new adventure, a new family. I don’t want to leave this place,

I want to press a button and like magic additional chapters appear and the story continues. 

It really is devastating when a book ends. No matter if the ending is what you wanted, feared, hated, or cherished…you don’t want it to end. Then you start a new book and the possibilities are endless, but you never forget your old friends.

HE’S GOING TO BE SIX??????

AJ is going to be six next month! Can you believe it? 6!!! Where did the time go? The fact that it took us 6 years to become parents and that is how old our little guy is! All those years of depression, worry, anger, jealousy, worry, fear are now replaced with love, hope, joys, craziness, passion and family.

Every milestone, every accomplishment, every worry, every frustration is truly a blessing I once thought I would never get to enjoy.

I think it’s time to start working on his party supplies and gift bags. I have to start taking his 6 year old picture make a collage of his previous b-day pics. Do you go to a professional or do it yourself? I have been using PicMonkey to edit pic and make collages and it’s a BIG money saver. The more you practice the better you get at it, besides it’s fun to create your own!

This Week I Read…

Yes, I’m changing a few things here. My guy is growing up and therefore this blog must grow too. While I’ll still keep the name and content, the way posts are presented will change. I will be referring to my little man as AJ, as this is close to his real name while still keeping his anonymity). Now on to the book review.

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Dog in Boots

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We bought this book about a year ago, or perhaps even two years ago. We read this every so often, it’s still one of our very favorites.

Amazon Summary:

Inspired by his favorite story about a cat with fantastic boots, Dog heads out to the local shoe store and emerges with some splendid footwear. Wants and needs are contrasted through the process of trial and error in this cheerful picture book.

AJ’s Review:

Dog is so silly, he wants to be like the cat in the story. He wants boots, but doesn’t like them. Then gets high heels and flippers, but doesn’t like them. He already has paws but doesn’t know they are awesome.

Mommy’s Review:

Even though this book is adorable and silly, it has the wondrous message that you MUST always be happy and love who you are and what you have. Dog thinks he needs all these different types of footwear to be a great dog and do great things. In reality, his own paws can do it all…if only he had seen the versatility and wonder of his own paws in the first place.

Dog tries various shoes and silly things happen. AJ can just about repeat the book word for word. The illustrations are wonderful and appealing. 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

Run, Walk, or Perhaps Crawl

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So after watching the race for years, I’m joining the Run Like a Mother Race 5K in my town on Mother’s Day!

 
http://www.runlikeamother.com/

No, I will not be running, but I will be walking. I thought I would be crawling after a few minutes, but I surprised myself as I trained for the race. I walked 2.3 miles in just 47 minutes last weekend! Then today I walked 3 miles in 55 minutes!!!!! I did it!!!!

AJ will be joining me too! The kids get to run one mile before the moms run. How exciting is that! He gets his own shirt and a medal for competing.

What do all the contestants get for participating? We get a recyclable tote/grocery bag, a Jockey Performance Tech Tee, a race bib (with timing chip affixed) and some small goodies. Pretty awesome right? After the race we get a ribbon I believe. I’m going to pick up our shirts and goodies Friday afternoon.

I hope Hubby takes lots of pictures, I want to capture all the great moments. I got some great advice, don’t worry about the other racers, just focus on me. Don’t worry about competing with anyone, just compete with yourself! So I plan to do just that, I’ll continue listening to Tess Gerritsen’s new book on Audible.

Die Again: Rizzoli & Isles | [Tess Gerritsen]

At the finish line, which is the local park, they will have stands with activities. I really am looking forward to the being a part of it all. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Mother’s Day? I’m hoping to go to one of the local restaurants and get have brunch with my guys afterwards. Then we have to all walk back up a hill to get home, but after a 5K it shouldn’t be too bad, right?

How about you? How will you be celebrating this Mother’s Day?

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This Week I Read…

Yes, I’m changing a few things here. Dino’s growing up and therefore this blog must grow too. While I’ll still keep the name and content, the way posts are presented will change. I may refer to Dino as AJ and will try to post about the happenings in our life, what AJ is up to, and what’s it’s like raising an only child who is as wild as they come. Now on to the book review.

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Andrew’s Loose Tooth

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Our town had a children’s book sale this past weekend, this was one of the books we bought. Is AJ starting to lose his teeth? Nope, not yet. I think he is ready, solely to get money from the tooth fairy. 

Amazon Summary:

Best-selling author and illustrator team Robert Munsch and Michael Martchenko have created another adventure about Andrew, his loose tooth, and the wacky ways friends and family try to pull it out!

“Yeow!” shouts Andrew. “Do something about my loose tooth. It hurts to much I can’t eat my apple.” Andrew’s dad breaks his pliers trying to pull that tooth. Andrew’s dentist can’t pull it either–not even by tying a rope to Andrew’s tooth and driving off in his car. The Tooth Fairy is a biker chick who says, “This is the first tooth ever that I can’t pull out!”

Andrew’s best friend, Louis, ends up saving the day with his special tooth-removing remedy–lots and lots of pepper up Andrew’s nose!.

AJ’s Review:

He has a loose tooth and it’s a crazy tooth, it won’t come out. That’s silly, that’s not true, it’s just a book. It’s not safe to use a hammer or car, that’s dangerous. My mommy wouldn’t do that to me, she loves me. His friend knows how to get the tooth out. He’s smart. 

Mommy’s Review:

A very silly book about a boy with a loose tooth that will not come out. He can’t eat his apple, so his father, mother, dentist, and tooth fairy all try super ridiculous and scary ways to get the tooth out. I am so glad that Anthony realized they were all being unsafe. Finally his friend, the smartest one of the bunch, comes up with a normal idea.

Kid Lit Blog Hop

Dinosaur Reads…

Old MacDonald Had a Dragon

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Amazon Summary:

Old MacDonald had a farm, E-I-E-I-O! And on that farm he had…a dragon? The animals aren’t happy that there’s a dragon on the farm. But Old MacDonald likes his dragon…until it starts swallowing up the animals! Can Old MacDonald save his farm before it’s too late? Find out in this silly adaptation of the popular song. Christopher Santoro’s brilliant artwork combines with Ken Baker’s fun text for a story sure to tickle kids’ funny bones.

Dino’s Review:

There’s a dragon on the farm. Dragons can’t be on farms, they belong in castles and mountains. The bad dragon swallows all the animals until he can’t move. I can’t tell you what happens to the farmer, it’s a secret. (Dino starts laughing.) Don’t worry, it’s a happy ending.   

Mommy’s Review:

Another book with repetition and wonderful illustrations. Dino loved guessing what would happen next and got mad when the dragon kept swallowing the farm animals. Dino thought the dragon would explode and there would be dragon parts all over. He really wanted a dragon explosion.

No worries though, all the animals and the farmer make it out safely.

Kid Lit Blog Hop

 

 

Dinosaur Reads…

Bear Snores On

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Amazon Summary:

Bear’s cave fills with animal friends as he sleeps in this classic book from New York Times bestselling team of Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman.

In a cave in the woods,
in his deep, dark lair,
through the long, cold winter
sleeps a great brown bear.

One by one, a whole host of different animals and birds find their way out of the cold and into Bear’s cave to warm up. But even after the tea has been brewed and the corn has been popped, Bear just snores on!

See what happens when he finally wakes up and finds his cave full of uninvited guests—all of them having a party without him!

Dino’s Review:

Bear sleeps because it’s winter and he’s tired. The other animals come in, because it’s cold. They make food and talk and have a party. They don’t want to wake bear up because he might eat them. Then he wakes up and is sad, because they didn’t invite him to the party. 

Mommy’s Review:

First of all, I love a book where there is repetition so Dino can read along. We keep reading “…and Bear snores on.” 

What a clever book about animals coming into Bear’s den to get out of the cold, they all get along staying warm and sharing their food. Then Bear wakes up and you think he’s going to be mad and scare them away, instead he is sad that they didn’t save him any food. 

They all feel bad and make more food for Bear and he feels loved. Then at the end of the book, Bear is enjoying the warmth and food while his friends snore on. 

The illustrations are detailed and captivating!  

Kid Lit Blog Hop

Dinosaur Reads…

The Monster Who Lost His Mean

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Amazon Summary:

Everyone knows that the M in “monster” stands for MEAN. But what happens when a monster can’t be mean any more? Is he still a monster at all?

One young monster’s attempts to live up to his name go hilariously awry as he discovers—with a little help from new friends—that it’s not what you’re called but who you are that counts.

Dino’s Review:

The Monster can’t be mean anymore and the other monsters bully him. He has no friends, but the kids are his friends. He likes his new friends because they like him.

Mommy’s Review:

I really enjoyed this book. Dino wanted to buy it at his daycare book fair a year ago and I’m glad he did. The monster lost his “M” which means he can no longer be mean. Instead he finds himself doing kind things for others and it makes him happy. He sees his former friends, the other monsters, as bullies and thinks he’s alone. Then he is surprised by his new friends, who like him just the way he is and name his Onster! 

Really like the message about bullying and friendships. The illustrations are captivating and draw you in.   

 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

 

Dinosaur Reads…

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The Yuckiest, Stinkiest,
  Best Valentine Ever

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Amazon Summary:

Even boys will fall in love with this valentine! 

Leon has a crush. A let-her-cut-in-line-at-the-water-fountain kind of crush. And he’s got the perfect valentine. But this valentine has no intention of getting caught up in any romantic conspiracy. “Love is yucky, kid! Valentine’s Day is all about CANDY!” the card yells at Leon, before leaping out the window and running away, leaving Leon to chase it across town, collecting interested kids along the way. 

Here is a hilarious take on the holiday that boys love to hate, the most complex holiday of them all. Saying “I love you” has never been so yucky or so sweet

 

Dino Review:

The valentine didn’t want to be given to his girlfriend. He runs away and Leon chases him. All the kids follow. He meets his girlfriend and the two valentines love each other.

Why did Mommy post a review of a Valentine’s book? Mommy and Daddy have been married for 14 years! YUP! 14 years! That’s a long time, like 292 years right?  HAPPY ANNIVERSARY MOMMY AND DADDY. I’M THE BEST GIFT EVER, RIGHT? 

 

Mommy Review:

What a cute book…the set up on each page is colorful and with story lines and speech bubbles. The valentine thinks love is stinky and runs away, Leon chases him, as kids chase Leon. They finally meet up with Zoe, his love interest. Zoe’s valentine and Leon’s valentine fall in love. It’s a great, very different, very cute book about Valentine’s Day.

Yup, fourteen years of marriage, twenty years together!!!! That’s insane! Happy Anniversary Tony! 

Kid Lit Blog Hop