Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Get A Grip
I went into the school and wasn't able to speak to the principal that day, I needed to come in the next day to speak to the principal and the special education teacher. While I was waiting to find that out I ran into Monkey's teacher; we talked about what I was purposing and she was in agreement and was going to start paperwork to get Monkey a Occupational Therapist (OT) from CCAC. This upsets me because at the parent teacher interview we were told that there was no issue with her grip, that she just needed more practice.
I went in the next day and spoke to the principal and special education teacher. They said that they understood that the teacher and I discuss this. We spoke about the Handwriting Without Tears program and they gave me a workbook to use with Monkey, they gave me special grips to use with her and told me I needed to use a multi-sensory approach with her. So I need to get her to work on the workbook, get her to make letters with bendaroos, with playdough, with popsicle sticks. I told them that from a podcast from the founder of the program that it should be done once a day for 15 minutes and twice a day during the summer. We also have to wait for the OT, the wait list is months long.
What gets me about all this is the school is suppose to be the experts on this and they missed this. Yes, I know that I have a role in this too; due to extreme circumstances I missed it too. But the teacher who tells me my daughter is having issues with her handwriting and "just needs more practice", missed the fact that her grip is all wrong. She told me it was fine. It's not fine. Since we've been working on it at home, her grip is all wrong. I have to teach her how to hold the pencil again, I also have to re-teach her how to hold her hand. She holds her hand over the paper like people who are lefthanded, the hand is over what she's writing not under. We have a lot of work to do.
I feel bad that we all missed this and instead of helping her before ad habits were formed we now have to break her bad habits and start all over again. How could it get missed by so many of us?
The good news is that what we've been doing has had some effect. On her math test last week the teacher acknowledge an improvement in Monkey's writing. Still a long way to go but we're slowly getting there.
Also so that the same thing doesn't happen with Muffin I'm starting to work with her when I work with Monkey. When she feels like "doing homework" I let her try. I'm not a stickler at this point but I figure a head start can't hurt.