Biofeedback and future school changes

I haven’t posted in a while as things are quite busy with home schooling, going to 6 appointments for the boys a week, babysitting on the side, before and after school, and taking the older kids to 3 – 4 school related appointments on Thursdays and Fridays and tutoring on Saturdays.    We are currently on the 4th Day of Christmas (12/28) and I’m hoping to do a “quick” post before going to bed, as I get up at 5:15 as of late.  It’s a somewhat slower pace with a pseudo-Christmas break.  We didn’t finish up our school work before the break, so I’m having the girls put in an hour or two a day to get caught up with their school work.

Having such a packed schedule requires me to really be on the ball and get to bed at a decent hour, and yet, here I am, typing after the kids go to bed.  So, to get to the point, let me give some updates on what has been going on with Joshua.  We had his IEP in November and the director of the program as well as the autism teacher, were not able to attend.  So, we went ahead with the IEP but I requested a follow up meeting with those who were able to attend, with the director, Annette, and autism teacher, Tammy.  That meeting happened on November 19th, and, it went great.  The Family Advocate, Shelly, was also able to attend, as well as the principal of the school.  It was such a blessing!  Essentially, we were able to discuss the plan for Joshua transitioning to a full day, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, with Thursday remaining a half day.  Tammy, showed me the focus of his pre-school which would include:

  • Structured group gross motor imitation,
  • Structured free choice time with a peer; game for turn taking,
  • Increased support for attending to task,
  • Increased access to closed ended activities for independent work.

Suggested skills for him to work on:

  1. Joint attention- social, attending, communication
  2. Gross motor imitation- imitation, attending, play
  3. pointing- communication, cognitive
  4. matching- cognitive attending
  5. Action ID- cognitive communication attending,
  6. Imitation with objects- imitation attending play

Once an Instructional aide is hired (which happened mid- December) and trained, his Extended Day program would start on January 18th and look something like:

9:00 – 11:30 AM Pre-school session with Miss Katie

10:30 – 11:30:  2:1 Pull out/aside for ABA table work

11:30 – 12:30 Lunch (20 min.)/Gross Motor imitation with yoga and Braindance (20 min.)/ Free play (20 min.)

12:30 – 3:30 PM Pre-school session.

I will be dropping Joshua to school while he finishes up his private therapies, so he will be arriving after 10:30 on Tuesday and Wednesday.

What is also exciting is the Home Support.  The suggestion from Tammy is to carry over direct instruction into the home as he masters programs at school.  Also, for me to observe him at school once every month or so and meet with Tammy to describe what they are working on with Joshua and why, as well as assist with generalization.

Tammy also offered to help us with some specific issues we have been having with Joshua, like running away outside, getting into things while I’m busy with household tasks or another child, etc.  The challenge I will have, will be attending some parent trainings offered on Fridays, which conflict with us going to Sky Valley Education Center for the girls.  I will have to see how to work some sessions in once a month, at least.

Sarah working with Joshua and his stamps

Joshua reading while Mom is working in the kitchen.

I did decide to cut out the girls’ art class they are taking this semester for next semester, which starts early February, as Joshua will be starting biofeedback on Thursdays, before school,  and it would be one less place I’d have to go that day.  I have been looking at biofeedback as a possible intervention for Joshua for quite a while, and, with the Cobra insurance with Microsoft expiring in April, I wanted to give it a go for 4 months and see if it would help him at all.  I feel bad about having to drop the art class, and honestly, will see how the remainder of this semester pans out, as I’m going to have to pack a lunch for the kids to make it work as it is, especially getting Joshua to school as well as getting the kids home from the YMCA.  I’m getting tired just thinking about it…

Anyway, I will leave the description of biofeedback for a separate post, but one thing to state, is that we are hopeful it helps Joshua as it has helped some autistic kids in some way, but it’s still in it’s infancy of researching it’s over all effectiveness and positive benefits.    So, today was his first day and I am hoping to keep record, either on Joshua’s Facebook group page, or on here, as to any changes I have seen.  Today, I did happen to see Joshua make some comments that were more self-generated and not as much echolalia.  I’m really hoping that he doesn’t have any sleep disturbances, however, as other autistic children have experienced.   Please Lord, help him and may he sleep through the night!

Joshua at Vision Therapy with Sam

Every toy received for Christmas has a dual purpose: fun and treatment

This entry was posted on Tuesday, December 28th, 2010 at 7:36 am and is filed under Autism Treatment, General Autism Info. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

 

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