Clouds, May 2010

Clouds, May 2010

Monday, October 2, 2017

attention to detail

Back to School Night at Hayden's new school was last week. Of course I'm still calling it his new school even though he has been a student there for the greater part of 2017-- he just hasn't been there a full school year yet. So for me and Dan this was our first BTS night since Hayden joined.

This is a much smaller school so whereas I'm used to a gymnasium with rows of folding chairs down the entire length of the room, this was probably twenty rows at most-- theater style, with an aisle down the center. As parents arrived, enjoyed a light bite, refreshments, and found seats, one of Hayden's therapists came over to us to tell us how well he did at the recent school trip. They went to a farm for a hayride, and apple and pumpkin picking. He brought home a pumpkin and three apples! But she wanted to tell us that he climbed a big stack of hay bales with her and she was very impressed how he successfully navigated up and back down. Her eyes seemed to light up with pride and adoration for him-- it melts my heart when we see a similar expression from his teacher or any other faculty member. One of the things I always said about the incredible support Hayden had in elementary school, was how lucky and grateful we were that the people working alongside him saw the same potential in him that we do.

After a little mingling there was a slideshow on the big screen with pictures of the students enjoying various activities, followed by a short PTA and budget presentation. Then we were dismissed to go to the classrooms.

We are the only new parents in Hayden's class so after his teacher spoke to all of us-- albeit a small group-- she spent some time speaking with just me and Dan. As we walked around the room taking in all of the projects they're either currently working on or recently completed, I took a few pictures to show the grandparents and then we paused at the doorway as we finished our conversation. It is quite obvious how much his teacher absolutely loves working with these kids every day, and her dedication and sincerity is always evident.

But the side story that truly resonated with me was when she acknowledged one of the desks that is set back a little bit from the others. She briefly mentioned to us about this particular student who is also very sensitive to stimuli (not so different than our guy). So this little bit of extra personal space provides comfort for the child and also helps with concentration, which I can completely understand. Anyway, apparently one day recently when Hayden earned down time and he was playing with something, this other child decided to join him. She said, " know that's not something that we've seen [said student] do, and so M [his aide] and I were watching very carefully and ready to move in, just in case..."

(I get it.) But that in itself warmed my heart-- the other student simply approaching my often loud kid, also not deterred by his sometimes unpredictable movements. Yet then Hayden's teacher went on to say it was more than that-- because the two of them remained side by side playing, for a block of time. Imagine that-- another child who doesn't even feel comfortable having a desk next to their classmates. And then this happened.

It was just really nice to hear. And even nicer that they notice the significance in these moments.