The First Day of School
On the first day of school I walked into my classroom, anxious and excited. My classroom was ready for the 8 hopefully smiling faces that would shortly enter it. There are names on the door and a morning meeting with new names and a new schedule. A new school year has started and I was starting another year of teaching at Celebrate the Children.
Every year I go in not knowing what to expect from the year to come. I don’t know who starts day one more anxious, myself or my students. (or maybe the parents sending their children for the first time.)
But then the moment comes when the students start to trickle in. And my anxiety goes away as the students come in with smiles, and hugs and the excitement of a new school year. Those smiles get me excited for the school year as well. I start to plan lessons where we work as a group and get to know each other. I get ingredients for crazy science experiments that i know will make my students giggle. I start to organize class projects and Community Based Instruction trips. I probably kill a few trees with the worksheets and crafts I print.
We start to build relationships as a class and I love to watch friendships grow and blossom. My classroom becomes a family and we argue sometimes, and we get on each others nerves, but we become friends and we get close, and at times we might cry a little but then we also share “big news” and amazing ideas. We grow together and on day one the faces coming in are very different then those leaving on day 188.
Tiffany Martino, Teacher
Before Adam began using supported typing, knowing what was going on inside Adam’s head was a constant guessing game. Not having a way to communicate places all caregivers at a disadvantage. Fortunately, supported typing changed that scenario completely for Adam.
Supported typing has been shown to be an effective communication strategy and a positive life-changing event. This communication strategy has allowed circles of relationships to emerge. Adam displayed considerable social, emotional intelligence, academic, sensory, and developmental growth. These areas were not evident in him prior to his engaging in supported typing. After years without a functional voice, Adam was able to engage in his education and follow his dreams. To put it plainly, the method had a significant impact on Adam’s life, as confirmed by testimonies and personal accounts. As his mother described,
The energy used to convince others (that do not want to be convinced) . . . . can now transfer to just enjoying my son. . . . learning more and more about him. This takes an enormous weight off of my shoulders. . . . I feel like I am living in a different world now. (Mrs. Mitchell, interview, May 7, 2012)
The responses of schools to Adam were generally negative, except for his current school. However, Adam refused to give up in light of the previous schools’ attitudes. Instead, he displayed the courage to fight through the obstacles.
Dr. Michael Knox, School Principal
Celebrate the Children
Contributions to this blog are made by Celebrate the Children's highly talented, interdisciplinary team and wonderful families.