"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." - John 16:33

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Our Little Home School. (aka...my catch up)

It's been a while since I've really posted about our home school activities so here is my attempt at catch up (now that I know how to download the pictures correctly!).  Home school for us is not like most families.  Peanut has a bit of a busy schedule. 
What I mean by "school":
Peanut currently receives his ABA therapy through our local school system. They have assigned him to a 1:1 Paraprofessional.  He attends their integrated special education preschool in an ABA based classroom.  The paraprofessional works with him throughout the day doing his discrete trials (complete with data collection) as he goes about the activities in the classroom.  She also guides him through social interactions with the other children.  This paraprofessional is also the person who does his home ABA therapy.  This is all done under the supervision of a fantastic BCBA.  While in school, Peanut also receives, OT, Speech Therapy and a monthly PT consult.  Peanut has seen great improvements with this therapy and we will continue it for the entire school year.  Once the summer begins we are hoping for ESY services for therapy and I may have to take over his ABA therapy.  (I'll eloborate on that more as we approach his next IEP meeting.)  By first grade we plan to only home school and negotiate drop in services.
Our Schedule:
Sundays are church days.  Mondays Peanut has school in the morning, is home for lunch, Sensory Integration Therapy at Easter Seals, and then home in time for a hour of home ABA therapy before supper.  Tuesdays and Thursdays Peanut is in school for a full day (until 3pm) and then home for ABA for an hour before supper. Wednesdays he is in school in the morning and has home ABA from 3:30-4:30pm.  Fridays we have Music Therapy in the morning.  Saturdays I work all day and my angels spend the day at home with their Nana (who is naturally therapeutic). 
How we make it work:

We start the day with a review of our schedule and the calender.  (I do this while they are at the kitchen table having breakfast).  This is a great opportunity to talk about the months, holidays and numbers.  Then if there is time, we will review our PowerPoint from RRSP.

Here are my angels going over their PowerPoint.  (Notice mommy's Starbucks??) 
On Tuesdays and Thursdays Sassy and I do some Tot School together.  We have little red bins (3 of them) that are on our hutch in our dining room, where I put activities I feel we should work on.  If we have time during the week I will also do the activities with Peanut.   
On Wednesday and Friday afternoons and sometimes Sunday afternoons we will do our preschool activities together.  (I will usually leave a simple craft to do with Nana on Saturday as well.)  Although Sassy is only 26 months old, she loves the preschool activities.  She has excelled quickly and has kept up with Peanut with most of the preschool activities!  We currently use 1+1+1=1 for most of our material. The lessons are intended for one week for a Preschool home school plan, and we spread it out into 2 weeks to give us time to really learn it all. We begin with the RRSP and elaborate off of it with other activities.  I will have Peanut cut out (good fine motor skill) the memory verse we are focusing on.  We then hang it on the wall so we can review it when ever we go by it.
I work in as many arts and crafts as I can.  Everything we do, whether it is playing with a toy, doing a craft, reading a book, or playing a game, it all has a therapeutic purpose.

Painting in our new Melissa and Doug coloring books.
I also make sure to work multiple Sensory activities into our days when we are home.  Here are my angels using our new Macaroni sensory bin for the first time.  This took a while to make because I decided to use gluten free pasta which is much more expensive than regular pasta.  I bought an extra bag a week until I had enough to fill the bin.  They LOVE this bin and I recently expanded it into a bigger bin.  This is a great sensory activity as well as a great fine motor activity.  I find numerous chances to begin some great pretend play as well.

I love teaching my children.  It's a true blessing to be able to do this.  Don't get me wrong, it isn't easy.  My husband works 2 jobs and I work Saturdays so we can make it every month.  Thanks to God's grace we are able to do it.  I feel God is leading us to do this and although it's ALOT of work, it's really worth it.

"Direct a child onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.”  Proverbs 22:6
God Bless

Mommy Provost

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