"He just came to life..."
The above quote is from B's music teacher, who was really excited to tell me about B's great participation during class today. This year B has music twice weekly (hooray!) & they have started the year with an exercise that Mr. Joe, his teacher, calls "Theatre of the Absurd". He's doing various improv exercises with the kids with hilarious results. B had not been enjoying music class very much- transition issues?- & had not been participating, which surprised me because he has really enjoyed music since he came to Cobblestone School in first grade. I guess today was breakthrough day... Mr. Joe tapped B for some of the improv stuff & B had everyone in stitches. As B described it, first he was not supposed to talk, with another student cajoling him to (no physical contact allowed) & then he was supposed to talk non-stop with the student trying to get him to shut up. B loved it & got the giggles when describing the other student's efforts to get him to talk, & his non-stop babbling as well. I just couldn't imagine talking non-stop & asked B how he did it. He said he just talked... & then I remembered how he loves to give me the minute details of each & every lego he designs, with all the back-story of their "lives" before he made them, & I understood how he pulled the talking thing off :) B said that he then pretended to be a rabbit & another kid chased him around as he hopped all over. Giggles again. I was delighted. B has really enjoyed theatre & music at school, & also shown a great talent for both. He has no concept of stage fright, which I'm sure contributes to his enjoyment of being on stage. Mr. Joe was really excited that B "came to life" during class. So excited that he had B's consultant teacher, Cherie, dragged out of a meeting so she could watch him :) B's class will be doing a musical play based on "The Velveteen Rabbit" this fall & I suspect that these exercises are preparation for getting to work on the play. Considering that B has his very own "velveteen rabbit" in the form of Rufus (& it's a long-time favourite story of ours), I'm really looking forward to seeing B's involvement in the play.
B's speech therapist called me today, too, & I was so glad to discover that it's the same person he's had for the past 2 years. Mary has been a wonderful member of the team & really knows B well. She campaigned successfully at his CSE last spring to have his speech hours increased from 2x 30 minutes/week to 5x 30 minutes, to help him cope with the transition to fifth grade. She's really excited because she's convinced that now she'll have the time to really make a difference with B's pragmatic language. She's arranged to come in at a different time each day, so that she can help him with a variety of activities. I was glad that most days she's with him in the afternoon, since that's when he has the most trouble coping. Such a relief that he's not having to get used to a new therapist!
We officially started a charting system for B's homework, so that he can start earning stickers toward little treats for each day he completes his homework. Today's was math & it was kind of neat- he had to solve a partially written logic problem, then find a final condition to narrow down the answers to one. I love how his school is teaching him how to reason, not just how to calculate...
The only unhappy part of the day was discovering that B had run out of gum today (he did remember to tell me after school) & so he ripped-up his fingers with a push-pin to relieve the stress in the absence of gum... I bandaged 5 of his fingers with healing salve before bedtime. It made me so sad I got teary & I tried to impress upon him that he should tell Cherie if he's feeling like he needs to do that. B said he would... I hope he does. The truth is, there is so much coming at my kid during a school day it's a wonder he remembers anything. I will also make sure Cherie knows what happened & maybe we'll re-instate our system from the end of last year, where B got a pokemon card for every push-pin he turned in... keeping his fingers safe it worth any number of pokemon cards, in my opinion!