Monday, February 06, 2006

Wimming with me?

  • Wimming with me?

Yep! I'm swimming with you.

  • Where your bathers?

Over there, see the bag?

  • What colour?

Are my bathers?

  • Yeah.

Black. What colour are yours?

  • Pink!

One of my better conversations with one of my students. Swimming was excellent!* We both enjoyed it. Unfortunately only one of my kids was able to swim. The other's mum had been sick on Friday and couldn't get her to school and so didn't get the message that swimming was definitely starting this week. She told me she had a fun afternoon colouring, so I didn't feel so bad she had missed out. In the pool we did all sorts of fun stuff and the student I was with was happy and confident in the water. We both had fun and it was a great way to get to know my student better and see them in a different environment – rather than in the classroom or in their wheelchair. And she seems to have learnt my name. That was kind of cool.

Today was really full on but I think I need to realise that most days will be like that with these high needs kids. I'm just hoping that the slight patina of panic will fade from the proceedings eventually. Things didn't go to plan today (not that there was much of one to start with) but I should get used to that too... 9am and I didn't have any students! Some had apparently slept as badly as me the night before and struggled with getting up too. So, we started really late and struggled to get through everything before we needed to start morning tea. Morning tea was late, we kind of missed play, then we didn't know what we were doing for the next session, literacy, so we went out into the courtyard for our own play and eventually got a bit of a plan together... One of the aides who helps out a lot in my classroom wasn't in today because she's in hospital with a broken pelvis! This could make things interesting especially with my two very active preps.

On a positive note, we are getting to know the kids better. Our groupings look like the two older students to further their literacy gains from last year, the two more aware? able? interested? advanced? (it's very difficult to find the right words...) together to start learning the alphabet and writing skills and we will need to get the speechie working with us to work on simple communication and choice making with our other student. She's just not at the same spot and has different needs at this stage. The thing I am finding hardest with this student is the need for discipline. She needs a lot of no! Her mum lets her get away with all sorts of grabbing, throwing, hitting that don't appear to be disability related. It will take some time to find ways of saying no to her and encouraging better behaviour. I guess that's teaching too, but not exactly what I had in mind.

Staff meetings are boring.

* Yes, one of the major reasons I wanted to work at this school was the presence of the swimming pool!

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