Saturday, August 17, 2013

Just hanging around

I had the week off work and we chose to just stick around home and let the kids play and do a few special activities. Gaëlle has a bigger bike and has been hesitant to ride it. I suggested going for a bike ride and ending with ice cream. Success. She quickly got the hang of the bike and we made it all the way to the Ice Cream Place. 

Peter and Gaëlle have been accepted to French school. This is a big deal and a major transition for us. On Monday, we went to the school to look around. We ended up with a tour of the school Peter will be going to which was great. Our tour guide was so pumped about his school and just full of enthusiasm. The kids also tried out some of the playground equipment. 

There was plenty of time for crafts this week. Both kids were at art camp last week and came home with some great projects. This day, they pulled out various paints and went to town. 

One day the afternoon was a little cloudy so we went to the Art Gallery downtown and saw a photo opportunity by the Maud Lewis House. 

Freak Lunchbox is a candy store just around the corner from the Art Gallery so we made sure to stop off there. I gave the kids a $2 limit. So that took a while to choose.

Gaëlle chose a twirly lollipop.

I did some school work with the kids every morning. I promised a special activity at the end of the week as a thank you for their cooperation and good attitude. Peter has really struggled with math. We even went through a private assessment this spring and then met with the pyschiatrist and school resource teacher. We really didn't come to firm conclusions but did agree that he needed a different and focused approach on basic math concepts. So that's what we did this week. It seems to have made a huge difference and may be well worth continuing at different scheduled times through out the year. If I can take a week every little bit and just work on one concept using a different approach, I think it would be so beneficial. 

Anyway, he had a great attitude and worked hard every morning. So off to Upper Clements Park he went with one of his friends. 

I think his expression says it all. Kaylin and one of her friends took them and from what I hear, it was a fun day. 

This was Peter's favorite ride. He was all for spinning it but his friend was not too thrilled with that. So, they eventually went in their own cars so that Peter could spin to his heart's content. 

So where Gaëlle during this Amusement Park fun time. Well, let's just say, the attitude was not all that great for her during her morning time. She really struggles with reading and we've spent quite a bit of time and effort on that through the past 3 years. She has developed several strategies that she thinks will help her survive (and I believe this is all subconscious) but these strategies do not help her read any better. 

I've been very intentional this summer in helping her recognize these moments and putting words to the actions she is doing. This week was really rough at times. I wish I could video tape her reading sessions because I can so easily see the manipulations and games that she plays. But teachers at school are clueless and allow her to play her games. None of us really know how to deal with these. 

But I think this week even with the difficulties, we had a major breakthrough. She won't be able to move past these games that she plays until she recognizes them and through self discipline stops them. By Friday morning, she was able to stop herself, and read without playing her games. 

So, it was too late for her to go the the park with Peter, but I did her hair and then in the afternoon I took her to a movie complete with the kids pack of popcorn, Smarties, and a drink. She was disappointed that she couldn't go to the Park but she accepted it and moved on. We ended the week with smiles. 

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