Talking About the Weather

One of my daily tasks is taking the Monster to the school bus, since it no longer just stops in front of our house.

Last year, when the Monster was on IEP transportation to get to Garrett Heights EMS, our daily procedure was that he waited inside, and I tended to either watch from my study, or go outside to stand on the curb myself to watch for the bus going up the nearby street on its way to us.  This year, though, there’s a couple of centralized pick-up locations, and so I drive him around the corner to one before I zip off to work. Continue reading

Math Matters

This evening, part of my task was to get the Monster’s homework done.

I don’t know how much the Monster really gets the basic concepts of math in the abstract.  He does, certainly, recognize numbers and can read out a ‘math sentence’ (what most of us recognize as an equation) to the point where he’s required to fill in the answer.  But he’s not making the mental jump to do the problems in his head. Continue reading

Forward Progress

Two weeks ago, we had the Monster’s first IEP meeting at his current school (see Talk About It).  At that meeting, we discussed changes to the current IEP to try to bolster his progress, since he’s been showing very little forward progress since moving from Garrett Heights EMS to The Mount Washington School.

Just to refresh: at that IEP meeting, we discussed increasing his special education (more than doubling it) and getting him an assessment for a one-on-one aide. Continue reading

Dietary Homework

Tomorrow is another trip to the feeding clinic, but there’s also whatever we can do at home to reinforce whatever is going on there.

My wife’s been working on giving him familiar foods in slightly unfamiliar forms.  For those who haven’t experienced the Monster and his eating… things have to look the way he expects them to.  Pizza needs to look somewhat like delivery pizza, and so-on. Continue reading

Fixing the Feeding

So, unfortunately, the Monster is a rather picky eater.

Finding something he’s going to eat is often a challenge.  There are things that he’ll eat away from home – chicken fingers, for example – that he won’t touch in-house.  Or the the appearance of those things has to be exactly the same each time he’s getting it, or he won’t treat it like the same, familiar food.  This is getting to be a problem, since the diversity of what he’s eating is actually, gradually narrowing, rather than broadening as you would expect with a six year old. Continue reading

Talk About It

Today was the IEP meeting with the Monster’s new team at the Mount Washington School.  We’re about six weeks into the school year, and it’s clear that we needed a checkup for the implementation of the program.  The Monster is just not making much progress and that spells trouble.

So, first thought – going to the school is a lot different than when we used to go to Garrett Heights EMS.  Aside from the fact that the office is literally right inside the main door, I was actually greeted by name by the woman at the desk, even as I was signing in.  (Scary – that they know who’s expected for an appointment.)   Continue reading

Unexpected Delivery

Here in Maryland, we have this wonderful thing called LISS, otherwise known as Low Intensity Support Services.  I’ve written about it before – LISS is a means for people with disabilities to receive funding for items not covered by insurance.  This year, Maryland lowered the limit to $2000 (from $3000) to cover more individuals, and there are now two lotteries for coverage – one in July and one in January – instead of a first-come-first-served system in July.

The problem, despite this seemingly more fair system… is that none of us know what in Heaven’s name is going on. Continue reading

Apples and Honey

Today was the second day of Rosh Hashanah for 5775.

This year, in Baltimore, the city’s public schools were open for the first day of the holiday, meaning that the Monster was in class.  The wife arranged for R to have a playdate with a friend from nursery school, and so… we actually got a day to sit in our actual seats in the congregation for a change.  (Well, as much as ‘we’ could, given that my wife’s vocal ensemble was performing with the cantor.)

However, today was a professional development day in Baltimore City’s schools, and we ended up with both children coming with us to synagogue. Continue reading