Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Green cats

As an elementary teacher with special education certification, it was no surprise that many of the children with behavioral and learning challenges ended up in my classroom. I didn't mind since this was the population I most enjoyed teaching although there were many days when I wished I had a few more corners to better separate the children who couldn't stop talking to each other. As is still the case, many students came into the classroom with the label of ADD or ADHD. Some of these children truly had trouble attending and my heart went out to them. There were others, however, who were just BAD. My heart went out to them, too, but for totally different reasons, ones that had more to do with the parents than with the children.

 My heart for this population of learners is what prompted me to tell the Good Doctor, while we were dating, that it was my plan to adopt 20 special needs children. In turn, he told me, while we were dating, that it wasn't going to happen. I married him anyway and while we don't (yet) have a houseful of special needs children, God did bless with me a dyslexic child (the brain of the dyslexic fascinates me everyday) and another who is classic ADD. My attention-challenged child just started kindergarten and it was my suspicion that her prenatal and birth experiences might hinder her learning that caused us to wait a year before sending her to school. Any child who is likely going to struggle in one area of schooling, is going to do well to wait and eliminate as many stressors as possible. So, wait we did.

And boy was I right! This is how a typical typical lesson with Hope goes:
Hope (reading): Color 1 cat green. (asks) I color 1 cat green?
Me: Yes. You color 1 cat green.
Hope: Is this a cat?
Me: Yes.
Hope: Are you sure because it looks like a kitten to me.
Me: Cat. Kitten. On this page, it's all the same. Just follow the directions.
Hope: Wait. How many am I supposed to color?
Me: Well, read it again.
Hope: (reading) Color 1 cat green. (asks) Green? Does that say green?
Me: Yes, that's what it says.
Hope: Green? I've never seen a green cat.
Me: Me either. Just color it.
Hope: Well, cats can be brown or grey or black or white.
Me: Yes, just follow the directions.
Hope: I like cats that have all of the colors. I think they're cute. Do you think they're cute?
Me: Yes, I do.
Hope: Then why can't we have a cat?
Me: Because I am allergic to cats.
Hope: Oh, right. Wait. What color am I supposed to color the cat?
Me: Never mind. Just do the next one. Read this word and write it under the correct picture.
Hope (reading): Pan (asks) Is this a pan or a pot?
Me: Well, it could be either but for the sake of the short vowel a worksheet, let's assume it's a pan. Hope (erasing): I wrote a capital P but I want to make it lower case so I have to erase it.
Me: Okay, but it really doesn't matter.
Hope (erasing again): I don't like that one; the line isn't straight enough.
Me: It looked fine to me.
Hope (after finally writing a P): Can I give it hair?
Me: Hair?
Hope: Yeah, can I put hair on the P?
 Me: No, you cannot put hair on the P. Please write the next letter.
Hope: Wait, what am I writing?

And that's just the first 5 minutes of school!

No comments:

Post a Comment