Reading Buddy

We’re experimenting with our little guy’s love of younger kids to build his reading and social skills. At the start of every school year, I watch and reflect on this “Common Strengths of Students with FASD” video by social worker Dan Dubovsky. It’s apparent T loves younger kids and they bring out his patient andContinue reading “Reading Buddy”

Guiding Light

Earlier this month, Pa would’ve turned 100. I thought about him when T had his first swim lesson. T’s always loved the water. The outdoor pools saved our pandemic summers and T loves swimming in lakes during our outdoor adventures. He’s very comfortable in the water and it was time he learned proper swim technique.Continue reading “Guiding Light”

Reading and Parenting with Pride

When those in power seek to maintain the status quo, they target access to information. I read with dismay and anger about Republican leaders seeking to ban books that discuss diversity, specifically 2SLGBTQ+ people, and to ban school curricula that discuss critical race theory. Reading is one of T and our favourite activities. In additionContinue reading “Reading and Parenting with Pride”

Gym Coach

I will soon add wannabe basketball coach to my CV. As a student, gym was not my strong subject. I did well in sports like cross country and baseball, but basketball terrified me. Similarly, participating in class, including gym, is an ongoing struggle for T in Grade 1, his first full year of in-person learning.Continue reading “Gym Coach”

The Power of Inclusion

When all kids are included, accommodated and set up for success, everyone wins. Maintaining a positive relationship with T’s school is a priority for the hubby and I. We try to be open, transparent and collaborative with his teachers and principal. We shared his recent FASD diagnosis and we’re thankful his school has been soContinue reading “The Power of Inclusion”

Finding the Bright Spots

Perfection is the enemy of progress. I thought about this expression by French philosopher Voltaire after T broke his four-week streak of perfect spelling tests. T’s teacher recently introduced Words of the Week; six words given on Mondays that he practices for a test on Fridays. T crushed the first four weeks and we postedContinue reading “Finding the Bright Spots”

Bedtime Stories We Loved: Volume 3

Reading to T as he rests his head on my shoulder is a joyful way to unwind. We’ve been reading at night with T since we adopted him at 14 months. As noted by the American Library Association, young kids that are frequently read to are more likely to recognize letters, have word-sight recognition, andContinue reading “Bedtime Stories We Loved: Volume 3”

Making Popcorn

One freeing lesson I’ve learned is that every child’s potential pops at their own time. You may have seen this meme – the photo of popcorn with a message that reads: “Popcorn is prepared in the same pot, in the same heat, in the same oil, and here the kernels do not pop at theContinue reading “Making Popcorn”

Teaching Kids About Money and Valuing Things

When T indirectly broke my tablet’s power adapter, he said non-chalantly, “Just get a new one.” “And where do you think the money is going to come from?” I asked him. Without flinching, he said, “I’ll open the pig’s bum,” referring to his piggy bank. Yes, a power adapter wasn’t super expensive. But it didContinue reading “Teaching Kids About Money and Valuing Things”

Reading Award

A thoughtful gesture of recognition brought a wonderful moment of confidence for our T. In addition to his handwriting skills, Team T at school and at home are working hard with him on reading. Reading with T, especially at bedtime, has been a favourite activity since he was a toddler. So many wonderful stories readContinue reading “Reading Award”

Handwriting Without Tears

If there was an award for false advertising, I’d give it to this web app that claims to teach kids how to write with pure ease. Handwriting Without Tears was one of the tools that was part of T’s junior kindergarten virtual schooling last Spring. Cute lessons and activities allowed kids to practice handwriting byContinue reading “Handwriting Without Tears”

How We Barely Survived Our Second Run of Virtual Schooling

T goes back to school next week, bringing to an end our second run of virtual schooling hell. The last six weeks were so incredibly hard, further amplified by other challenges like Ma’s unexpected health issue. Meltdowns, daily battles, frustration with getting T to sit and focus, embarrassing moments of T throwing a fit whileContinue reading “How We Barely Survived Our Second Run of Virtual Schooling”

“You Need to Be Proud of Yourself Too!”

Every Friday morning, I sit with T for virtual art class before lunch and it’s been quite calming! Four weeks of virtual learning hell is behind us and it has been so so hard. Much of the school day is punctuated with meltdowns and battles. But we find a way to get to the end,Continue reading ““You Need to Be Proud of Yourself Too!””

Sunday Blast Off To Space!

Pandemic lockdown has restricted travel, but T’s imagination rocketed us to outer space on a quiet Sunday. All I wanted to do on this afternoon was nap – I feel so exhausted – but T’s endless energy needed an outlet and I always feel guilty about plopping him in front of the tablet all day.Continue reading “Sunday Blast Off To Space!”

Focusing Again on Potential and Growth Mindset

“There needs to be a lot more emphasis on what a child can do instead of what they cannot do.” I saw this quote shared recently on Twitter by Surrey Place, the wonderful agency that has been supporting T since he was 1.5. I reflected on this quote by Autism spokesperson and advocate Temple GrandinContinue reading “Focusing Again on Potential and Growth Mindset”

Confrontation with an Angry Parent

During a daycare pickup this week, the staff told me T threw a toy at a boy and caused a bump on his head. They said the parents were upset, because it’s not the first time T and this boy have had issues. I told the staff the hubby and I will speak with TContinue reading “Confrontation with an Angry Parent”

Creating an Individualized Education Plan for Our Kindergartner

Last Friday, we were notified by T’s child and youth worker that a parent had complained to the teacher, specifically about T not giving a classmate personal space. I read this entry in her daily log entry late Saturday evening after experiencing the high of a wonderful Halloween celebration with T. It bummed me out,Continue reading “Creating an Individualized Education Plan for Our Kindergartner”

Preparing For A Return to Homeschooling in Lockdown

Creating hands-on learning tools, restocking supplies and reconfiguring our kindergartner’s learning space were things I prepared for a potential return to lockdown homeschooling. I took the past week off work to recharge. While I spent most of it relaxing, I also used the free time for homeschool prep. COVID cases are at a record high.Continue reading “Preparing For A Return to Homeschooling in Lockdown”

Return to Day Camp!

During yesterday’s day camp pickup, the staff told me that T was talking to them and the kids about Madonna and how he wants our family to move to London to live with her. Being a big Madge fan, moments like this are like a ray of light and remind me like a prayer thatContinue reading “Return to Day Camp!”

Learning and Fun in the Summer

On a scorching Friday morning, T and I went for a hike in our city’s beautiful Botanical Garden. We explored nature, had a picnic of apple juice and Goldfish crackers in the shade of a willow tree, and he saw and learned about cactus plants. Oh, and he spotted a beaver up close too. ThisContinue reading “Learning and Fun in the Summer”