Friday, October 1, 2010

Preschool Corner- Integrating Nolen's Special Needs into our Homeschool day

So, now that Nolen is requiring a lot more time than just a "normal" newborn with his extra doctors appointments, therapists and feeding team/feeding care, we have been taking our time stepping slowly back into this homeschool year. A lot of homeschooling had to occur on the go, in doctors offices and through our daily experiences, so I don't have a lot in means of photographs. I'm also working hard to incorporate Anna into our work so there are a few activities that we did together.

 I haven't received my curriculum yet (Horizon's Math, Explode the Code), so this week was inspired by the new PBS series The Cat and the Hat knows a lot about that....all about Ants. (Yes, it's a sad day when you end up finding and creating a homeschool week around a cartoon you watched with your children. I'm just trying to make it through day by day.) I still have a lot of activities I want to do with this so we will continue on into next week.

We watched the show, discussed how Ants work together, how they lived in colonies and had a queen Ant. Which then led to pretending to be the queen. Then we talked about how we were having to work together as a family with all the new demands of taking care of Nolen.

Things they did together:

Teamwork: The girls worked together to clean up their toys each night. They also Marched together saying "2,4,6,8" like the ants on the show. They had to work together to "lift" heavy things like the laundry basket. They also helped me set up areas for Nolen to use for his "therapy". Right now, due to his severe loss of muscle tone, his therapy really consists of encouraging proper spinal alignment and assisting his body into "relearning" how to hold it's head in the proper positions. So, the girls helped roll up blankets to create bolsters, used the pictures on our paperwork and helped assemble these little centers for Nolen all around the house!
The rolled up blankets support his head so that he can look straight ahead while the larger one on the bottom props his knees up so that if you could flip him over onto his tummy he'd look like he was crawling.

Kaelyn helped teach Anna her colors and shapes using these toys. I am learning that Anna is a much more "hand on" learner. Kaelyn then used the pegboard to sort, make patterns, finish patterns, and count.

Kaelyn's School work:
 Kaelyn enjoyed playing pretend Queen Ant, she also decided to spontaneously make a book on her own. She wrote the title (3 Musketeers) and then used some of the leftover Ant Circles to create a person! It was all on her own, and yet again, inspired by a movie they watched more than once this week. I know...shame on you Mom!
 She also assembled the spine and folded the book on her own. Aside from Spelling the title (which she asked me to do) this is her first independently done craft! And I'm loving how proud she is. It's gone to EVERY appointment and has been worked on very carefully in each one.

Both girls were supposed to do this art project, hoping to teach Anna about circle, the color red and the number three while encouraging Kaelyn to work independently while I assisted Anna. Anna ended up tearing her ant up, while Kaelyn produced a very nice ant with self cut legs and antenna.
Anna, on one of our many outings worked on this lovely Ant!
And I love that she had to hold the pen correctly to get it to mark!

That's what we've managed to do so far in our very hectic time of adjustment. Hopefully, I'll get easier at doing homeschool in a waiting room! To see what other families have been up to check out Preschool Corner!


Anonymous said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! I didn't realize Cat & the Hat is on now. I will have to look it up and see when it's on here!
Cutie kiddos you have there! Are you liking Horizons Math?

Kim said...

Wow, you are doing an awesome job of including the girls in Nolen's care. A huge, important life lesson. And we often have school lessons that spin off of t.v. shows. Crumpet will see something and he wants to try it. I think t.v. has its benefits in that way, and I think that your survival is probably more important right now than how many hours they sit in front of the t.v. We love that Cat in the Hat show too. Except that the song is constantly stuck in my head!

welcome to our wonderland said...

I love that you made a whole lesson on the show! :) it is a great educational show and you extended it into some learning outside of tv :)

we just watched the show for the first time it is cute.

love all your play areas for nolen's therapy and that you had the girls help so they feel they are not only helping mommy but their baby brother.

Jennifer said...

I love how you incorporated Nolen's extra care into the lesson of the show how ants work together. That is an awesome way to get them to understand- by using real-world situations. I think you are doing a great job with the lessons, with keeping up with Nolen's extra care and with tying it all together on the run.