Sunday, November 17, 2013

The School Note

Over the summer, when Ellie attended her private preschool, we would receive weekly notes that discussed what they were learning in class--"we are focusing on trains this week and read "The Little Engine That Could", the sensory table was filled with beans, and Ellie mastered connecting 4 trains together and put them on a track"--or something along those lines.

Bear's school pic

During the school year, Ellie goes to the public elementary school where she is in the PPCD class [preschool preparedness for children with disabilities].  She rides the bus to and from school and with her being nonverbal, I pretty much rely on the teacher notes to give me a clear idea on what Ellie's day is like. The notes are sent home in her backpack typically 2-3 times a week.  The teacher circles if she was happy/sad, ate all/some/most of her lunch and if she had PE/Speech/OT, etc.  There is a blank spot for comments.  Usually these comments are about Ellie's behaviors.  "She sat 30 seconds in circle time!" or frequently "she was very unfocused and all over the place".  I don't really see a lot of academics mentioned even though I know they work on letters and numbers with Ellie.  The thing is, most of her IEP goals are behavior-based and we are having quite a few behavioral issues with Ellie.

So when I got this note, I cried.

I shall translate:

"Much Better Day!"

Activity 1) Sat and played w/ pop up peg toy for 10-12 minutes. (no prompts). she is usually everywhere.

Activity 2) Circle-moving to others' chairs when they stood up, but in general calmer, listening, not eating shirt

Activity 3) Chalkboard-only ate one piece of chalk. Sat and drew w/ markers w/out chewing them up. Sitting well.

Activity 4) Great at art time. Painted, didn't put in mouth, didn't rip it or rub a hole in it. Didn't dump water.

Activity 5) STAR 1-1 Not so good. Under table. grabbing

Lunch-Didn't sit independently, but better until she grabbed a tray and dumped it.

Can you believe it?!?!  She sat and she didn't eat everything or destroy everything.  Girlfriend did pretty good. . .until Activity 5 and lunch.

I am curious, do you all get notes home from school and if so what sorts of things do the teachers tell you about?


In other news, Andrew and I will be hosting our first ever Thanksgiving and I don't cook.  Really, I. do. not. cook.  How we have escaped hosting for this long is beyond me (maybe people were afraid of being poisoned?).  Anyway, I have to do the sides and the dessert.  This will get interesting. I mean how do you have everything served warm at the same time?  Or avoid burning dishes as you attempt to juggle a few sides at once?  The good thing is Andrew is smoking the brisket which will be awesome.  Yes, a brisket.  What?  You thought we were going to have turkey? This is Texas, y'all.  (Actually, we have never made a turkey before, so yes, a brisket.) So, wish us luck!



  1. What a great note! I would of cried too. My son is in a similar preschool with substantial sensory issues. Teachers are invited to write in a notebook about his day. I wish I could control it because I feel it's not always the best stuff write and when I follow up there is no time to send me more. I want more and don't know how to make it better.

  2. Best. School. Photo. Ever.
    Am consumed with jealousy… And yet so very, very happy for Ellie's bright days at school. Y'all deserve nothing but sunshine & smooth paths. May there be many more.

  3. Great school note! Almost seems like by the time lunch/afternoon rolls around, Ellie is done. Owen is very similar in that regards and I do worry how all day Kindy is going to go next year. Our communication last school year was great--we had notebook that the teacher or the aide would write in usually 3 times a week and I could write back, knowing they would read it. This year they aren't doing the notebook at all, so I have to rely on getting the teacher's attention once a week at pick up. I'm not in love with this type of communication. She says I can email whenever I want, but I don't feel like I'll get good information this way or at least timely information. I think I need to come up with something else that can be done easily each day or at least 3 times a week.

    We are hosting our 1st T-giving this year too! And we've got the turkey to do.......the hubs is undertaking that venture!

  4. brisket > turkey
    End of story.

    Great note too. ;)

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