Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Nikko's Video

Nikko was standing next to Ronin's bed again this morning when I came in around 7:13a, and Ronin was awake in bed too. I was trying to go in and scoop Nikko up without waking up Ronin, but that was obviously moot. Audrey woke up around 7:30a as well, so I had all three kiddos in the morning before school. I had to put Audrey back in her crib and take Ronin with me outside when Nikko's bus came. After school, I got a very good progress report back. Nikko had OT this morning and Mrs. I said that he did a 3 part obstacle course independently. He's participating in his sensory diet activites well, and he working on drawing O's around stickers and drawing faces. I used to wonder what the heck a sensory diet was, and then I read about how it's just a series of activities tailored to each child that lets them work on whatever he has sensory issues with. He has poor muscle tone so they probably work on exercises to build his core muscles, and if he were intolerant of loud noises then they might work with sounds to see what he can handle or how to cope. On the back of the report Margie wrote me a note:

I did a sorting activity with Nikko - I started w/red & green bowls & chips. After 4 reps with modeling he could do it 100%. We moved to 3 and he was at least 75%. I switched to colored bears to see if he would tranfer - he was tooo cute. He had to kiss & hug little bear before he put into a bowl. Wow!

Awww, really? That was so nice of Margie to tell me that. And the best part of today was that in the afternoon Kathy Winters emailed me a bunch of video they took on Friday (Nikko was wearing his green Westbrook shirt) of Nikko in various activities that morning. We discussed this on Thursday at the Back To School night, and the very next day it looks like Kathy went ahead and started filming. How AWESOME a teacher is that? I was able to see Nikko be very attentative and participative. The first video was of Nikko on a scooter. They lay him on his tummy and he was supposed to use his arms and legs to propel himself forward, thereby strengthening those core muscles. Brilliant! In another clip, Nikko was sitting in a green cube chair during circle time. He seems to not mind being led around the classroom, and they are using a picture schedule to let him know what comes next. They also have pictures of actions on a big key ring and they flip to a picture of someone standing or sitting or doing whatever action they want him to do, for reinforcement. Nikko had a wandering eye in his chair, but it contained him while Kathy was conducting some action in the front of the class. Nikko is the only one sitting in a cube chair, but that's because he probably can't sit still nearly as well as he has to. I saw him raise and lower his arms appropriately as everyone else was doing. Other video had Nikko at snack time, where he was savoring a rice cake, taking too long of course. Then there was some free play and he opted for the Lego table. Kathy directed him to the kitchen area, where he investigated some cupboards but ended up doing what she called the "Nikko Dance" which was not quite spinning, but some kind of off-balance shrugging and body jerk movements that do look like a dance of sorts. Nikko was able to move a velcroed picture from the outside of his schedule to the inside; I also saw them washing hands in the bathroom. He had foam soap on his hands, which he rubbed together but kept investigating the foam at a slow pace. One other thing I noticed in the videos is that Nikko yawned twice. I wonder if he yawns every day in class? I'm going to email them back and mention a few things, but overall it was so awesome to check out this video of Nikko in action during school. He seems really calm and agreeable, almost willing to participate but just a little confused about everything around him. There are a lot of sounds that seem to confuse him, as if he doesn't quite know who is telling him what to do and he often needs to be led by the hand instead of told from across the room to go to his chair. Nikko also worked 1:1 with Ms. Winters on speech therapy. I know she's very in-your-face and seems very determined to work with Nikko to get him to talk. I am SO grateful for that. So is Nikko very different at home than he is at school? Not really. I see many of the same characteristics at school; it's just that at school there's much more going on around him that probably stimulates his senses vs. being at home in the living room with the TV in the background. I haven't seen his aggressive side at school, and that's probably a good thing.

Nikko didn't nap today, unfortunately, even though I tried to set up an environment so he could. During Ronin's nap I took Audrey, Nikko and Lego out for Lego's pee-break. Nikko seemed to enjoy walking down the sidewalk with Lego right next to him, even though he did walk ahead of us at times. Nikko didn't resist when it was time to go inside either, which was good for me. But throughout the day Nikko seems to have a little edge on him, getting frustrated with Ronin in his way and then falling to the ground in protest. Nikko also started throwing some blocks out of his way and protesting while laying on the mat some time after lunch, and I wondered what was bugging him. Maybe he was tired and couldn't fall asleep, but it was kind of violent enough to have Ronin ask, "Nikko? Nikko?"

Tomorrow I don't have any place on the agenda to go. I'd like to work on cleaning up things around the house more. I haven't been up to cleaning while I had the cold, but I better tackle something. I don't know if a Costco trip is in order, but perhaps we'll venture out just so the kids get out. I've been trying to keep nap schedules going, which is why I've been tied to the house, but it's also important for Ronin to get out.

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