Today is Em's Last Day of Preschool

It's hard to believe that today we're closing the door on Em's first year of the developmental preschool. She is officially on summer break, and Jay will soon be joining her in four more days. I didn't have high expectations going into the school year since we had our awful experience with being lied to several times when trying to get her enrolled in Georgia, but this experience has turned out to be above and beyond everything I could have ever expected. 

Em started off the school year pretty rough and cried hard every time I left, and would basically cry off and on the entire time until I came back two hours later. It was hard on her, and on me to be honest. There is nothing worse than leaving your kid somewhere, knowing that they're upset. It's heartbreaking on both ends really. 

After two weeks though, Em became obsessed with preschool and was excited to go back every chance she got. The weekends became dreaded days in our home because Em would beg and beg to go to school, and we would have to tell her over and over that she would have to wait until Monday. 

I was convinced that Em wouldn't learn that much just from going to preschool for two hours a day, but she has excelled so much in the last eight months. She can count to 10 easily, and I think if we worked on it over the summer, she would easily get to 20 (she knows all the numbers to 20, just mixes a couple up every so often). Thanks to school and Youtube Kids, she knows her colors extremely well. Over the last few weeks she has really mastered knowing all of her shapes, and the alphabet is the next thing she's really working on. She can also tell you what every animal is and what sound it makes. She's such a little champ. 

She is also talking so much more. At her IEP meeting in January they told me from what they noticed she was only putting about 2-3 words together at a time, and at home over the last several weeks we've noticed that she's attempting bigger groupings of 4-5. She's even using big words like, "delicious", which I happen to think is the cutest thing ever. 

The physical changes that have taken place though are huge. She went into the school year barely sitting and now she crawls, pulls to stand, can go up and down stairs, walk in a gait trainer, push herself in a wheelchair, and most recently, she has learned to pedal a bike (although that wasn't really learned in preschool but still happened this year!) It's been amazing to see her going from relying on us for everything, to really becoming very independent. 

From a fine motor standpoint, Em can hold a pencil in a tripod grip, and has learned to feed herself with utensils very well. I remember in Georgia they were unwilling to teach eating with utensils to Em unless we sent her to school in the mornings for breakfast and were super condescending to us about the task, and here they naturally just taught her how to use them... I've mentioned how I have zero respect for the teacher in Georgia we were assigned to right? 

Overall, Em's first year of preschool was amazing. I feel like we were truly blessed to be able to find such a kind group of teachers and aids who really made Em feel like a million bucks in school each day, and they really helped to make the school year amazing for her. I have so much respect for special education teachers, and how they willingly dedicate their life to the upbringing of those with disabilities. It is such a hard job for me as a parent, and they go out and serve and love an entire classroom each day. Her teachers truly are angels, and I couldn't be more grateful for them. 

1 comment

  1. I was a special education teacher and I appreciate your thoughtfulness.