A family's story

Posts tagged ‘speech’

Five Years of IEPs

Soooo, I was organizing my files, and realized that we’ve been dealing with IEP’s for FIVE YEARS! Holy frickin’ moly! In February of 2007, Jake’s daycare teacher and director approached me about looking into preschool screening for him. They felt his speech was behind his like-age peers and he could benefit from an evaluation through the school district. Considering that, at times, Hubz and I were certain he was speaking Swahili, I called the number and got Jake an appointment.

We arrived at the school where the screenings were being handled in plenty of time. They had me turn in my forms that had been mailed prior to the appointment, and then they took Jake back to be screened. I waited ever so patiently in the “holding cell”…it was a small little room with a tiny window that was up high. I got so claustrophobic in there…and of course, I was concerned.

Jake bounded up to me when his screening was over. The district rep handed me a sheet of paper that essentially said that he was okay with gross/fine motor, was average with social skills, but that his speech was in the borderline range…I asked what that meant, and they said it could go either way. They told me they’d be in touch. So, we were on our way, thinking all was right with the world. HA! Gullible me…

Winter turned to spring, spring turned to summer, and summer started to turn to fall. We didn’t receive any calls, so I figured it was kind of like, “No news is good news…” Ahhh, the early denial…sometimes I beat myself up about it, but you know, it was a process..getting from there to here. I have to forgive myself that. In so many cases, that IS what happens. The kid ends up being average, “typical”. Not so in our case, but in many others, it is….

In late September of 20o7, a speech pathologist from our home school called me at work. She said she had come across Jake’s file, and that she wanted to see why we had never pursued speech therapy, asking if we were going “private”. I was baffled. I told her that we were told that he was borderline, and since then, he had gotten a little better. She asked if I could bring him in for a quick evaluation. I figured we had nothing to lose, so we scheduled the appointment in early October.

Early October came and went. Jake got evaluated. I got a call from the SLP…yeah, he was more than 30% delayed, so he qualified for speech services. We set up a date for the IEP meeting. I went alone, and we hashed out his goals, all of which seemed fine to me. Of course, I had absolutely no idea what I was looking at or reading at the time, but she made it sound good, and he was just barely over that 30%, so I figured he’d be in speech for about a year and then he’d be good. Double HA!

Jake’s initial IEP went into effect in mid-October 2007. Many of his goals were pronunciation and annunciation goals. He had to slow down. Take his time. Get the entire word out. He also had Wh- question goals. How did I miss that?! But, when I started to think about it, he did seem to have quite a bit of trouble answering questions. He started itinerant speech services at our home school, 2 times, 30 minutes each, a week. Hubz and I took turns taking him. He  was making progress, and seemed to be doing ok. Little did we know that was just scratching, oh so very lightly, the surface of what would become our relationship with special education services through our district.

Five years ago I had very little understanding of what an IEP was, what it did, how progress was measured, how it was going to affect our children’s lives. Today, I think I could give a college course on IEP’s and what they SHOULD do and what many DON’T do…but back then?? I was lucky that I knew enough to sign at the dotted line. As confused as we were back then, at least Hubz and I knew enough to know that something wasn’t quite up to par…and we took action. Our son(s) deserve nothing less….

Editor’s Note: Tomorrow is Jake’s IEP meeting. We got our draft last week, and it was confusing. I have marked that thing up with highlighter and notes like I’m going to be given a midterm on it. Wish us luck. We’re hoping for a change in eligibility and a few more accommodations to help Jake succeed in school. I hope and pray this goes smoothly.

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Kids Say the Darndest Things….

I know that this post most likely will only entertain me…but I want to document a few of the amusing phrases that have slipped through my children’s lips lately.

Let’s talk about Jake. Somewhere on TV he heard the phrase, “Snug as a bug in a rug” in a Southern dialect. He now makes up these weird phrases and says them in a Southern twang…”worms are wiggly as a bug in mud”. I’m wet as a prickly fish in a puddle.” “I’ll shush you like a slammer-jammer.” For serious. He’s said these things. When I’ve questioned their origin he has told me he created them. Observe:

Me: Where did you get that from?
Jake: My brain! (Duh, you ignorant woman!)

Jake also uses the phrase “headbutt slam” way too often. It’s fairly self-explanatory, but I really wonder why he needs to use it when I ask if he’s finished a chore. Observe:

Me: Jake, did you put your cleats in the shoe bin?
Jake: Mom, do I need to headbutt slam you?
Me: (in my mind- wtf?!) A simple yes or no works…

Moving on to Tate. He just cracks me up. While his spontaneous speech continues to evolve and progress, he does have a lot of scripts and some echolalia. What’s funny is when the scripts and echolalia are slightly different from what has actually been said. Observe:

Tv commercial for Capri Sun: Respect it! Respect the pouch!
Tate: Expect it! Expect the couch!

Me: Gross! That’s disgusting!
Tate: Gurrwoss! That’s discussing!

Me: Mmm! Delicious!
Tate: Mmm! Dishes! (Although, he’s actually saying delicious more and more!)

Veggie Tales: If you like to talk to tomatoes….if a squash can make you smile, if you like to waltz with potatoes, up and down the produce aisle…have we got a show for you.
Tate: Ip you like to talk to tomatoes, ip a squash can make you smile, ip you like to walk with potatoes, up and down the puppy’s smile, have we got a show for you.
(This is better when he’s belting it out at the top of his lungs, doing his Tater dance and beaming a huge smile…it’s infectious…)

Tate: Gimme that chicken nuggets, NOW!
Me: Whoa! Can you ask differently?
Tate: Gimme those chicken nuggets.
Me: How about a polite word?
Tate: Please. Gimme those chicken nuggets. NOW!
Me (inner head slap…) Can you ask nicely?
Tate: I said please.

Cole. Ah, my sweet Cole. He is two-months-shy-of-three. He is the most verbal of my 3 boys. He has great conversation skills. But, being just-shy-of-three, he has those adorable misprnounciations that are sweet.

Cole: Can I play with the train traps?
Me: the train tracks? Sure.
Cole: Thanks, Mommy! Train traps are cool!

Cole: Can I get papas at Cossco?
Me: You want pizza at Costco?
Cole: mm-hmm.
Me: Can you ask nicely?
Cole: Pwease!?
Me: Please!
Cole: Thank you!

Cole: My bird day is in Joom.
Me: Your birthday is in June.
Cole: My birthday is in June. I get cake and presents.
Me: Sure.
Cole: And woo-woo trucks.
Me: Fire trucks.
Cole: Fi-wer trucks. And Lego dudes.
Me: Fire trucks and Lego dudes. Yep.

Cole: I wanna watch Doc mcstuppins.
Me: Doc McStuffins.
Cole: yes.
Me: How do you ask?
Cole: Pwease.
Me: Please.
Cole: Welcome.

I just totally giggled. At my own post. Ahh, well, at least I amused myself and recorded these for posterity!

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