CHANGE: New Year, New School, New Teachers

(Guest post by Monica McDivitt – Monica blogs at Like a Butterfly)

Have you ever felt this way??

This summer I tried desperately to figure out the best way to introduce Samantha to her new teachers and new school without focusing solely on her disabilities. Samantha is hearing impaired, cognitively delayed, motor delayed and does not have verbal communication skills. Transitions from one environment to another are usually most challenging because, in actuality, one cannot simply sit down and tell Samantha what is going to happen next because she does not understand this level of communication. Samantha is often confused and afraid during transitions and this often leads to resistance and discontent. Consequently, I am often left with a sick feeling – like I have abandoned or mislead her in some way. I also feel as if Samantha is left wondering “What happened?” As her mother, the one thing I can do to make it better for Samantha (and myself) is to help her teachers, paraprofessionals, therapists and other service providers to know and understand who she truly is, what her strengths are and what she enjoys the most. To do this, I needed to figure out a way to provide a substantial amount of information in a comprehensive but concise manner. If you have ever felt this way, then there is something you can do to help ease your mind and heart- make a portfolio about your child.

When I handed a big binder full of information about Sam to her new teacher on Sam’s first day of 6th grade, I was told it was a “teacher’s dream.” When Sam got out of school that day, a substitute teacher greeted me and told me how smart I was and congratulated me on doing such a nice job. I smiled and really appreciated the compliment but I love and care about my Sam and this is why I did it, not because I am “smart” or wish to be “supermom.” Sam is my world and I want people to know her and understand her like John and I do.

Yes, it took some time and effort but she is worth it and your child is too! Hope this helps someone. 🙂

Things I included:

Our Vision for Samantha.
Samantha Facts
Samantha’s Family
What Makes Samantha Unique?
History of Sam

I am Sam. Sam I am.
If You Knew Sam Like I Know Sam…

Early Childhood Intervention, PPCD, Elementary
Evaluation, School Photos & Artwork

Genetics Report
How 18q- Affects Samantha
18q- Syndrome

Sam’s Hearing Aids
Language Skills
Lunch Time with Sam.
More about Sam’s Needs
Contact Information

Magazine Articles including Sam
Different Iz Good Articles about Sam
People First Language

About Guest Blogger

This post was written by a guest contributor.  Please see their details on our Contributors page.  If you’d like to guest post for Different iz Good check out our Write for DIG page for details about how YOU can share your stories and tips with our community.

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iPhone Speaker Accessory Tip – Jawbone

Team TLC (for those that don’t know … that’s Thomas, Lillian and me – Camilla) had lunch the other day with Kathy and Caitlin Fuetsch. I met these two lovely ladies last March 2011 during our Vino for Voices fundraiser. Caitlin, who is in her 20’s, suffered a stroke a couple of years ago and uses an iPhone with Proloquo2Go to speak with. During our lunch visit at the Fuetsch Casa, Caitlin typed in something to say to me and pressed speak. I was blown away because I could hear it clearly and ALL throughout the house! Kathy had bought Jawbone JAMBOX (amazon affiliate link) for use in the house and it is AMAZING!!! She can even hear it when she’s upstairs and Caitlin is downstairs. I told Lillian we need one of these and she said “Yes. I can use it to ask you where you are and you’ll hear me!!” This child is obsessed with knowing where I am at all times! Check it out!
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Do It Different and Also Help Different iz Good

Want an opportunity to help yourself while at the same time helping the Turning Views Foundation and the Different iz Good cause?  Oh, and for as little as $1 or whatever loose change you have!!!  More is good, too!

Rachel Flower of Senssoma has created a FUN 30 Day Change Challenge Course called Do it Different and has generously offered this course for FREE to anyone who makes a donation to the Turning Views Foundation and the Different iz Good movement in the next two (2) days.  After that, 50% of the course fee will be donated to Turning Views.

The Do it Different Change Course is for those of us who are not getting the results we’d like or fulfillment we’d like.  For those of us experiencing set backs, overwhelm or frustration.  If you are ready to have some fun AND get your Mojo back, sign up for the Do it Different 30 Day Challenge.  After this course your life, your business and your creative expression will definitely be different . . . AND it’s a whole lot of fun! Plus, for the next two (2) days you can get all this for whatever donation you can make to our organization – no matter how small (or how large if you are able)!!

Please take a few minutes to check out the course at the Do it Different site and share this with anyone in your life you think would benefit.  I, Camilla Downs, HIGHLY recommend Rachel.  She is a dear friend and knows her stuff when it comes to overcoming set backs, overwhelm and frustration and I speak from personal experience.

Thank you to everyone who participates and for sharing this post!

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