Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Getting Ready for School!

Important Reading!
Originally uploaded by sammi's mom
I can't believe it, but school is just around the corner for Samantha! The time has absolutely flown the last 20 months. She'll be starting in Arlington County's 2-year old program in September. We still don't know if she'll be in the full five-hour-day program, but everyone assures us she will. Her first evaluation is next Tuesday, at her new school, with her new teacher! I'm taking a half-day at work so I can attend--I certainly can't miss this! I'll also take the opportunity to vote in Virginia's primaries that afternoon.
Samantha's still doing her sponge impression--she learned 5 or 6 signs in a day last week. Steve's been an amazing teacher. He basically went through this entire little book of signs (not the one she's holding in the photo) for children that Matthew gave Samantha for her birthday last year, and for every picture on every page, she either can say the word or she can sign it. She now signs, "book", "doggie" (which she has been able to do for about 8 months now, but she's now doing the ASL version of it), "hat", "bird", "telephone" and "food". She gets so excited every time she signs, and claps, I guess because we always get excited and clap! She also pats her chest when you ask if something is for her, or if it's her turn, and she can identify her head, hair, nose, ear, eye, mouth, foot and hand when you ask her. One of her toys plays the song, "Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes", and she gets great pleasure in playing it over and over again, laughing hysterically as I bust my backside doing the motions from a standing position. I can't even touch my toes without bending my knees. She says, "more" when it's over and makes me do it again. Talk about an aerobic workout!! I sooo don't have it in me anymore.
About 6 years ago, when I was managing the Oilily store in Tysons Galleria, one of my part time employees, Dani, was also a special education pre-school teacher by profession. She was always so amazing with the kids and the parents who came in to shop, and I used to ask her about her job teaching. She left because she got very sick with leukemia, and I only ever heard anything about her through occasional e-mails sent out by her family. The last I had heard, she was in remission. After Samantha was born, I thought about her often, wondering if she was still teaching. Well, last week, we attended one of the school transition meetings we've been going to, and it was held in the classroom of one of the local schools with the pre-school program, and Dani was there as one of the teacher-presenters! I was so happy to see her and to see that she's still teaching, and thrilled that she got to meet Samantha. She teaches the 3-5 year old class at a school that's nowhere near where we live, unfortunately.
It's a small world.

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