J-Bear and Me

learning to navigate the world, j-bear style

Preschool 2014-2015

Today was J’s first day of his second year of preschool. We had a visit to his classroom yesterday as he is with his same friends and same staff, but in a different building this year and initially he resisted. Full scale yelling “no”, threatening to melt down but he calmed upon approach of the building. I think realizing it was not the awful summer program he was returning to helped.

Fur seal pups playing in an enclosure while a little boy looks on

Watching the fur seal babies play.

We celebrated yesterday with a trip to the New England Aquarium as mentioned before. It was a fail overall, which still bugs me. I did reach out to them and hope to be able to talk to senior staff there soon about potential things to be done to make the aquarium more accessible to people with special needs like J’s.

Anyway back to the story at hand. Ximena, J’s runner through the I Run 4 group, sent him a fantastic Superman t-shirt and I realized when we opened it that this had to be J’s first day of school shirt. We got dressed, washed up, even brushed teeth this morning and marched off to school without a single struggle this morning. He celebrated the new year with munchkins for breakfast, of course. He had no issue going into his classroom, setting his things in his cubby and getting to work. This is such a departure from last year at this time!

This year he will do two days a week, one hour each time, in the general preschool classroom. I am nervous about this but also excited. I think he has grown so many skills in the past year and it will be interesting to see how he responds when this becomes a part of his routine. Last year, a visit to that classroom would immediately shut him down and send him seeking a place to burrow away. I do not think he would do the same now but as ever, he always surprises me. The dog will also help to boost his confidence, which will help in ways I bet we cannot even yet measure.

Here is Mr. Preschool 2014-2015:

little boy in a backpack

Before school. Pardon the weird haze at the top, my phone case is a jerk.

superafterschool_marked

Little boy after school with his buds! He made that hat. It has apple cut outs that the kids glued on them. Adorable!

2 Comments

  1. Sounds like a great beginning! I love the way you are turning something negative into a positive by reaching out to the Aquarium staff!! Hopefully, they will make some changes; at the very least you have made them aware of the problem of inaccessibility, which they probably have not focused on before. Hopefully this will plant a seed of thought which will result in some positive results!

    • I am really hoping to! I was discouraged by their response to my email once it reached the higher level people but I wrote back politely suggesting that if I could help in any way with this process I would be happy to be involved. When people think accessibility, they think wheelchair accomodations and accomodations for those low of vision or hearing. That’s a great -start- but there’s a widely varied disability community. It’s 2014. Time to start broadening horizons!

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