I just received an evaluation plan of my son from his class. I’m perfectly aware that my son has a lot of difficulties and that he’s severely behind in development but reading about it, black on white, is no fun and leaves me very sad, desperate to find a solution.
Just to give you a little insight in his world, I’ve decided to write a little about the evaluation plan – I’m going to translate from Danish to English what they wrote, only bits from it but then you get an idea of the difficulties my son has… here goes:
– Disability type and severity:
Tobias is a boy, 6 years old. He’s severe retarded with significant influence on behavior. In addition, pervasive developmental disorder, no specifications.
– Special considerations:
Tobias has many stereotype movements where he hits his hands together and alternatively takes them to his mouth. When he’s in a good mood, he moves his head from side to side. Tobias doesn’t use his hands at any point to reach for a desired object. He’s also very unsteady on his legs and therefore he falls easily. He walks on his toes and if he falls he doesn’t use his hands to ease the fall therefore he’s wearing a helmet when he’s in school. Tobias can’t walk that far and when we have to go out on longer walks we have to bring a stroller.
Tobias clearly shown insecurity when there’s too much chaos around him. We experience it mostly in the mornings when he arrives and the other children arrive as well, therefore mom doesn’t bring Tobias until later where the other children has arrived. He shows his insecurity by screaming loudly and persistent.
– Social functions:
Tobias is very fond of recognizable adults and smiles when you mention names of people he knows. Tobias doesn’t seem to take any notice of the other children – only if they’re loud around him, then he shows insecurity.
Tobias shows when he’s unhappy by screaming loud. It’s easy to hear the difference if he’s happy or sad/angry. Tobias loves being in the stroller. If he’s unhappy about something, he easily finds peace and security if he’s sitting with one of the teachers or in the beanbag with a ball blanket.
Since he doesn’t use his hands, he can’t eat by himself. He’s getting help by a teacher who’s holding his hand around a spoon/fork and leads it to his mouth. He can’t hold the spoon/fork by himself.
Tobias doesn’t show any interest for toys and if we try to place something in his hands, he looks away and lets it drop out of his hand. He’s very fond of watching television.
Tobias enjoys the morning song ritual we have each morning, he sits in his chair and he’s very occupied by the music. He’s rocking from side to side while smiling.
– Emotional stability:
Tobias can be very difficult to motivate. He doesn’t have a favorite toy or teddy bear. He doesn’t take initiative to reach for an object.
We’ve started sensory stimulation where we brush him with a soft brush and a massage roller. Also we massage his hands and feet. This is being done while he’s lying on his stomach on a mattress, only wearing a diaper. Tobias holds his breath a lot and his stomach is bloated. He swallows a lot of air, which makes him burp and fart a lot.
– The student’s physic:
Tobias’ balance is poor. Han falls easily and is very tense in his body, for example when we change his diaper and we try to move him just a little around. He doesn’t use his hands when he falls nor does he use them to reach for a desired object. He can’t get up himself. It’s very difficult for Tobias going up stairs or just over a small edge – he doesn’t look down at any point while walking around. Tobias likes to ‘swim’ but can get a little upset in the water. He has a big need for being close when he’s in the water. Tobias needs full help with getting clothes on/off.
He eats a lot of food and fruit. But he’s a little thin boy.
– Language development/communication:
Tobias doesn’t have any verbal language but often uses screams/sounds if he wants something. If he’s angry, you’re not in any doubt! He shows a very angry face.
Tobias just started using a day schedule where we use concretes. For instance he has a little smurf that means that he has to go to his schedule. Tobias doesn’t understand this kind of schedule yet.
This was just some of the evaluation plan. I’m full of hope and will never give up but dammit it hurts reading this even though I know all of this, after all I live with it each and every day! But there might be a whole lot that my son’s not capable of doing BUT his warm and loud laughter is contagious! He makes me whole!
But I’ve gotten worse reports on him – he was a lot worse before I home trained him. Again, Im so happy I made that decision because the home training for sure changed my boy a lot but we still have A LONG way to go but I’m trying to enjoy the journey no matter what.