To start out, there were a few transportation mishaps. One of my kids' buses never showed up. Well, suffice it to say, this mother was getting her kid to school. She's been waiting since June 19th for this day to come! So, that kid showed up in a taxicab!
Another kid needs shots and his mother couldn't get a doctor's appointment for about a week. So, he'll be here in a week or so!
Our favorite friend, who has been discussed in many of my blog posts, returned from visiting family out of the country. The assistants and I were all very concerned that she would lose ALL of her skills while she was gone, because she was unable to attend our wrap-around summer program. She showed up this morning with PULL UPS in her backpack. This did not give me a good feeling. She reached into the bag to pull them out and I pushed them back in and I said, "We don't wear pull ups in middle school. We're big kids here." Then I directed her to the bathroom. I told her aide to really be vigilant about the toileting schedule (taking her frequently). I also put a bathroom tag (small picture card with a toilet icon on it) on her pants (this stage was surpassed in October of last year, as she now uses her communication book to ask for the bathroom using a full sentence). I added the bathroom tag because it gives her a quick way to request the bathroom no matter where she is. Surprisingly enough, she remembered how to use it and was requesting the bathroom independently all morning. How DARE we think she would lose all of these skills. She sure showed us! She even brought her communication book to me with the sentence, "I want hug Mrs. Smith" on it. She got one. A really big, proud one!!! She was showing off, using her book, not having accidents, being a cool 7th grader, and really making us proud. She even left the classroom and hit the voice box that says, "Goodbye!" on her way out - as she looked straight at me and waved (a skill that took MONTHS to acquire). We were so proud.
The boys were all happy to see me, our new para is enjoying his role in the classroom, the day went so smoothly. We made "welcome back" goodie bags and delivered them to our biggest fans. We did spend a considerable amount of time playing with our new 1500 pc lego bin... but that is to be expected on a "transition" day from summer to school.
It was nearing the end of the day and I almost thought to myself, this is too perfect! All of the sudden, one of the aides looked at me and said, "Where's B?" I said - "She's supposed to be with you! Where is she!?" I freaked out. I ran out of the room. Literally, a split second of taking your eyes off of them can lead to this type of thing! I told one para to stay with the boys in the classroom, one para went upstairs to look, one para went down the hall, and I went the other direction. We were calling her name, looking for her, asking if people had seen her - what a horrible teacher I am! How do you LOSE A KID on the first day!? And this is possibly the HARDEST KID TO LOSE. She is loud, makes squawking noises as she walks down the hall, kicks her legs in the air, jumps through large groups of people, and has a one to one para! As I am panicking, I made my way to the cafeteria. Who but Princess B is sitting in the middle of the floor of the cafeteria with an open bag of Cheetos that she had stolen from the now empty lunch line. Cheeto cheese covered her fingers and face and as soon as she saw me, she started laughing hysterically. She jumped up, threw the bag in the trash, licked her fingers, and jumped over as if to say, "Alright, got my fill, let's do this thing."
I was glad I found her, but I am SO embarrassed this happened. Whew. Something terrible could have happened to her! I am just thankful it turned out as it did. She had no idea anything was even wrong. She was just enjoying a bag of cheetos and laughing hysterically! We are all on "flight risk" duty and will be keeping the door shut. I am also looking into one of those door alarms that beeps when the door opens, just for safety!
Lets hope this is a one time thing. In the meantime, I can only laugh thinking about how she had on one sock and one shoe (each on different feet) and the big cheesy (literally) grin that she had on her face when we discovered her.
Perhaps tomorrow I will add a card that says, "Let's go to the cafeteria" to her communication book. I mean, can you blame her? She didn't have that card today. She took care of business. Let's just consider this an opportunity to expand her vocabulary! Despite this mini-mishap, she proves to me on a daily basis that we will continue to make great strides as we achieve success daily.