Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Back to School!?!

Oh, how I have been counting down the days until "back to school!"  Summers are LONG around here and the daily structure and routine that school provides is greatly missed.  However, now that the end of summer break is upon us and I am finally in the single digits in my countdown, I am not feeling quite as enthused.  I am actually beginning to feel a little apprehensive.  Thoughts are racing through my mind... will the teachers and staff understand my sweet boy who has limited abilities to communicate?  Will they be patient with all of his fears and anxieties?  Will the other children be quick to notice and point out his differences and if so, will he know what they are saying and will his feelings be hurt?  Will we be able to still implement the diet that is necessary for his continued progress?  Will Gabe have the same heartbreaking emotional meltdowns at school that he has at home and will the staff be prepared to help him through it like Mom does?  It's difficult to shut my brain down and make the madness stop!  

I had the opportunity to meet with the new principal and was very pleased with the meeting.  I walked away feeling reassured and many of my fears were calmed.  I am certain that I will have a more difficult time with the transition to a new grade and new school than Gabe.  I know I should be used to him being in school by now since he has been attending an elementary school since the age of three, but this is different... it's KINDERGARTEN!  This is serious stuff!  

Gabe's preschool program began exposing him to a general education Kindergarten class this past year and I think it went well overall.  He attended the class for a few minute each day with the assistance of a classroom aide.  I had often wondered how he handled this environment and if he was able to actually sit still and be quiet while in the Kinder classroom.  I received a humorous report one day by chance when we were picking Gabe up from Sunday School.  A sweet little girl stopped us and said, "I know him!  He comes into my Kindergarten class."  She went on to ask us, "Do you know what he did the first time he came into class?"  Oh no!  I was not certain I needed to hear the answer to that question, but I heard myself respond with, "Oh, what did he do?"  She was very eager to describe Gabe's nonstop talking about fire drills and excitedly told us about how he moved around the entire time and couldn't sit still.  Great!  

I hope and pray that Gabe's new classmates will learn to appreciate his quirkiness (and even his love of Expo markers and Wet Ones.)  If that's too much to ask, then I just hope that they will be kind and see him as the sweet, loving, funny and unique little guy that he is.  I long for his teachers to have a sense of humor and when Gabe randomly names off every character in Trucktown books or repeats a lengthy list of items found in the "I Spy" books and television series, I wish that these teachers could draw upon creativity and quick-thinking and somehow incorporate these inappropriate outbursts into their lesson (in an effort to not make him look and feel so out of place).  Is that too much to ask?  Possibly, but I choose to be optimistic. 

No comments:

Post a Comment