Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Our Special Ed Boy

Last Friday we finally met with Noah's special ed teacher and his new speech therapist to go over a new IEP (individualized education plan).  His special ed teacher has been working with him at his pre-school and has been giving us weekly written reports of how he's doing.  The speech therapist did a 45 minute evaluations of him a couple of weeks ago.  We feel that both of them have a pretty good handle on who Noah is and where he's at.  Now in addition to the help at school, he'll be doing 30 minutes a week of regular speech therapy. 

One funny thing he did with the speech therapist was when he was no longer interested in the task she wanted him to do, he put his head down, said "sleep" and pretended to be asleep.  Heh.  His special ed person said one time during a book reading he just very, very slowly turned around until his back was to her.  We think it's amusing how he finds nice ways to protest. 

When we started all of this before the last school year, Noah was about a year behind on speaking.  He's made tons of progress, but he's still about a year behind.  He's excellent at labeling things - saying what things are, and at repeating certain phrases we use with him a lot, and at repeating just about anything we say.  But when it comes to spontaneously speaking, it still comes out mostly in jargon we don't understand. 

Ching and I think he's better at understanding us and at following directions than his teacher might.  She said he's not so good when he's asked to "point at..." or "show me..."  but those are two phrases I don't think we've ever used with him, so I understand why he doesn't know them. 

Sometimes it's odd to realize things we don't do with Noah that I guess are common - like the point at or show me. 

He knows his colors, numbers, shapes and alphabet - but we've never actively taught any of it to him.  He's learned it 90% through videos.  We know he has a great memory.

On that front, last night we drove past the place he went to a swim birthday party last summer.  He saw it and said "water, water" and really wanted to go in there.  We had an errand to run first, but let him go in and see the other kids.  He was so upset he couldn't get in the water.  We wouldn't have guessed he remembered it, or would want to do it again.

His regular teacher says he is one of the kids in his class who really seems to want to learn things and takes interest in new things. 

I have a feeling that his language delay might be masking just how smart he is.  (Or not, it's hard to really know.) 

Of course, the biggest question we have is why.  Why is this seemingly specific part of language so hard for him.  I'm not sure there's an answer. 

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