Friday, April 27, 2012

New Adventures

Sometime around the beginning of the year, I started to really notice that Max and Ivanna were sort of doing the same ole' same ole' every day. I started to feel as if Max and Ivanna were reaching sort of a developmental plateau. I knew that there was way more potential, and I started to realize that I was not tapping into the fullest potential of both kids.

I had always had the absolute goal of homeschooling Max and Ivanna as well. Of tailoring educational goals around their particular needs. 

But. Things change. 

When Max and Ivanna first came home from Ukraine, the goal was to have them get healthy. For weight gain, therapies scheduled, surgeries done, medications prescribed ... etc. Praise God, all of those things are being managed and their health is in good form. 

After much prayer, my husband and I decided that we would meet with the school district and find out more information and how putting Max and Ivanna in school would be a benefit to them. I wasn't looking for an "out" but rather looking for help in giving Max and Ivanna the tools necessary for more independence and further learning.

The school district's response was amazing. It was just what I needed. The reassurance that my children would be well cared for and have everyone working together for what would be best for them.

The result is that Max and Ivanna have been attending school since about February, both ride the bus (which picks them up and drops them off in my driveway) and both have had wonderful IEP meetings with fantastic educational and therapy goals set. Max and Ivanna have really blossomed in some ways since. Ivanna started initiated kissing me all on her own. She walks up and down the stairs holding the rails, she even is getting better at maneuvering the playground at school. She seems to be less agitated in many ways. Max just LOVES riding the bus and going to school. His teacher and aide remind me that he is very popular at school.

So, for now ... we are quite pleased with the decision. If things change, we can always deal with issues as they arise. 

*sorry for the quality of pictures, but often times it's just easier to snap images using my cell phone*

Ivanna's first ride on the school bus. 

Max's first bus ride!

Max learning to color by using the 'hand over hand' technique

Max learning to cut also using hand over hand

Justus says hello

Justus is an iPad expert

All three littles on World Down Syndrome Day. (March 21) 

At a place here in Port Orchard called Imagination Station. A great place for sensory stimulation.

Max and Chloe exploring

Max and Justus trying to climb the big toy. Would you LOOK at Justus, he is actually trying to climb. That kid has NO FEAR!

Max enjoying the bubble corner at Imagination Station.

Are my littles growing up or what? I can't believe how each one is getting so big. By now, Ivanna easily weighs more than Max - and seems to have more muscle tone. Ironic, given her being crib bound in the orphanage. Max is still struggling with reflux. It drives me crazy, and I really don't know what to do to be a better help to him. Justus turns three in a few weeks, and the thought makes me teary. We are so so so busy right now with having a newborn (baby Asher) and unfortunately he is sick. :(

Thank you for stopping by. 


B.E.Hughes said...

Thank you for catching us up! Good to know that Max & Ivanna are responding well to school routines. I am blessed to hear it!

Marianne said...

I love seeing updates on your beautiful and growing family! I homeschool our boys, but we decided that it would be best for Darya to go to school and so far we are glad with our decision. She's grown and learned a lot there. I'm glad you're in a good school, too! What wonderful news to hear that Ivanna's muscle tone is getting stronger. She (and Max) have both blossomed so much in your family and it's wonderful to watch it happen!

The Potvin Crew said...

Thanks for the update on your kiddos! Wow! They are getting so big! I have always wondered about the Imagination Station. I am right there every week by it and have never gone in to check it out... probably because I don't have little ones anymore. :( (At least for now, that is.) It looks like a fun place. I'll have to let some of the others know about it. Praying for Asher to get well soon. Hugs, Grace

Hope Harder said...

Good choice! Although I've homeschooled also, I do send my special needs kids to school. The therapy, interaction and structure does wonders for them.

Jenny B. said...

Yay! What progress! They are both so beautiful! Glad to hear all is going well and that the school has proven to be beneficial to them both.

Tom and April said...

They are doing awesome, and from what I have seen the program is amazing. God is good to bless us with some excellent opportunities to grow our children in ways that we always can not (or do not have the right tools). I think you are doing an amazing job with all the kiddos. And wow Max's coloring and cutting are AWESOME!!! Go Max!


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