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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Special Kids, Special Needs -- Back In the Saddle...Structure

Hello, everyone! I'm back. :-D Thank you to Gina for allowing me a break as I finished my Psychology degree. We've just finished Christmas break, and are heading into another full semester. I must tell you, that for my twins, the last week of Christmas break was as close to horrendous as we've come in a very long time. With the somewhat lack of structure, not being in school, and the constant here-and-there of the holidays, not to mention the never-ending energy that built toward Christmas day, they were worse for the wear. Meltdowns. Screaming at each other. Bedwetting. You name, chaos ruled--for a while. LOL

Things are settling back down...but only to discover that we are going to be moving in a month's time. This means that the boys will have to change schools--and I'm quite unnerved about that. Their special education teacher is a miracle in the flesh. This woman has more patience than it should be legal for anyone to have. LOL I've already cried over having to take them out of her class and their school.

My point to all this, again, is structure. The more I study and research and live/breathe special needs, the more aware I am of how CRUCIAL stucture is to these precious children. The simplest little upset in that structure or routine can be devastating to the little ones whose minds demand it. Already, I'm mentally preparing for the summer, when they'll be out of school. As any mother knows, summers might mean vacation (from school) for the kids, but more often than not, there's little to no vacation for the moms (or care providers). I hope to get some simple workbooks (like from Wal-Mart) and plot out their mornings. This will take a lot of energy on my part, but without it, life will be disastrous.

Also, regardless if your child is clinically diagnosed with special needs, it may behoove you to arrange a schedule for the summer. My family will have afternoons free to themselves, but they will have a series of events/things that must be accomplished in the mornings before playtime can occur. I'd rather surrender my mornings than the entire day.

Have you had experience with this? Please, share your thoughts.

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