Monday, March 22, 2010

Grace Update

Grace has been attending school for 2 months now. So I thought it would be a good time to do an update post on her. She attends a school called the ARC of Chester County. It is school for kids who have significant physical and mental disabilities, so it is the perfect place for her. She rides in a van (which you can see here in this post) with between 3 - 5 other kids. She goes to school Monday through Thursday from 9:00 - 1:45pm, but with the van ride she is picked up at 8:00am and dropped back off at 2:30ish.

We are really pleased with the difference we see in Grace. We have noticed that she seems more aware of what is going on around her, she will come up and look at you to get your attention or come over and put her hand in yours (which is especially sweet to see with Daddy). She said 'mama' the other day and John came running to get us to make sure we heard her. She was talking to her shoes but still we gave her credit for using her voice :)

The other day, the boys and I were doing Easter coloring pages (that I downloaded from this blog, which I am obsessed with!). And just for fun, I put Grace in her highchair and gave her a coloring page and crayon. Well, 3 months ago she wouldn't even hold the crayon. But this time, she started making dots and then rubbed the crayon back and forth on the page. It was so amazing to see her 'coloring' on her paper. I gave her a couple different crayons and she used each one on the page.

Grace will also allow you to hold her hand while she is walking. What I mean by this is that before she would hold onto you for support when she was learning to walk but once she could on her own, she did not want you to hold or touch her hands in any way. But now at school, they take the kids by the hand and lead them to lunch or gym class or to and from the van. So now, when you say 'come here Grace' or 'let's go this way' and take her hand, she will allow it and follow along. This is a HUGE improvement!

And she is becoming more and more inquisitive. She is exploring her environment more and showing likes / dislikes. Just the other day, we needed to get into the car to go get Luke from preschool and I was running behind schedule (I think it is because we live SO close to school that I never leave enough time to load everybody up and get to the school on time) (or at least that's my story...). I heard her playing in the playroom when John and I were doing his homework. But when I walked in to get her I could not find her.

Until I looked

Under the train table

So that is where I found her. Under the train table, eating a power ranger. And since I had to take pictures of her, we were really late for Luke's pick up.


Donna said...

WOW, Anne! That's all in two months!?! Crazy!

Sending up three big cheers from down here in the south! Keep up the good (and hard) work, Miss Grace!

Gardenia said...

The school experience Gracie is having is remarkable. and it must be encouraging for you to see such good changes in this period of time. Grace is getting stronger and becoming more expressive of her thoughts. wonderful news. and very sweet the way she tucked herself away out of view becuase she didn't want to go get her brother. I'm sending you a private email about the other thing we are working on.

Amanda said...

I love all that you know about her... her personality and her likes and dislikes... I have yet to sit down and really define who I think my kids are. I want to. But I am just bad at it!

She is sure cute!

God bless-

Cheryl (FTC) said...

I love to hear such wonderful things about Grace!! She truly is a blessing :)

Hannah said...

Wow. She is doing amazing. Obviously that school is just a blessing to your sweet blessing.

Anna said...

That is such wonderful news to hear how well Grace is doing and that she is improving in her must be so encouraged by that Anne.

That is great that she can have such an intensive program for all those hours each day...and sounds like it is making a difference which makes the long day for her worth it.

Very cute pics of Grace hiding under there:)

Take care,

Rena said...

It is so wonderful to read about Grace's great progress! Hope it continues!