Saturday, 12 September 2009

Just some brainstorming....

Social or academic... ? .. Where to put the focus...???
Lotte needs a lot of support in order to keep up with school-work. Reading is going well, and improves with the amount of time we spend on it. Math, adding and substracting so far, requires help as well. Fortunately, she loves doing homework. She loves reading and she's OK with being corrected - gramatically. (That said.. the sentence "I know that.!" is used often by her.. :-) )
BUT.... she loves to get the bike and just go back to school... interact with the other children that are still there. Cycling from one place to another... Being with others....
How to combine this.??
An advantage is that.. this is Norway. We have no problem with her cycling off. She has a watch, and even though she can't tell time, she understands how the dials have to be for her to be home. She's very punctual...
A disadvantage is that.. this is Norway. Days are getting shorter quickly, and cycling in the dark is a No-No for Lotte. Also dusk is too dangerous.... so this leaves little time between getting home from school, and being back inside.

So... there's the dilemma. She needs exposure to both social interaction and the academic... The social part is obvious when friends come home with her. To her it's great, because she can interact 1 on 1. Put another 7-year old in the equation, and Lotte will not be able to keep up.
A couple of days ago this happened when she had a friend over, and the two played along fine. When a third child came at the scene the interaction, or attention is not distributely equally. Lotte will fall behind in the conversation and games, and will get frustrated about that. Lotte came to us and informed us that the latter had to go. She wanted the friend to herself.
For us it's interesting to watch the difference between a 7-year old that has heard all her life, and Lotte, who has been deaf for the first 2 years.
We can see that there is still a lot to catch up.
Lotte is doing really well, but she is only slowly catching up on the 2 years lost. It seems as if she caught up 1 year since she got CI, meaning that she's mentally a year behind the rest of the class..
Realising that can hurt.... or you can look at the other side... CI helped her to catch up.
Because, when she had had signlanguage from the start and because of that had not had a delay in cognitive development, she would still not be able to interact with all the children she's interacting with right now. She would have had just a couple of other friends that would speak sign. And they would only see each other during schooltime, and sporadic visits.
Now, CI has made her in a very social girl, attending the school as her brother and sister - close to home, outgoing, determined to say what she wants to say. Sure.... she could be that deaf/Deaf as well, but not in the hearing world.
She would not have been able to communicate with her grandparents. Even thought they could have learned sign, they would have been surpassed by Lotte in no time. Now, she talks to them on the phone when in Norway, directly when in Holland.
In a way we cannot imagine how Lotte's, and for that matter, ours, and our other childrens life would have looked like had Lotte not been able to hear...
It would have been completely different. Can't say if it would have been better, or worse... but very different.

Btw... she's allowed to cycle to school for 1/2 an hour.. then homework.. :-)

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(Some) Milestones

  • 2013-08: Grade 6
  • 2012-08: Grade 5
  • 2011-08: Grade 4
  • 2011-03: BTE's on the ear
  • 2010-08: Grade 3
  • 2009-08: Grade 2
  • 2008-08: Mainstream School (6y. old)
  • 2006-10: All-hearing Kindergarten (4y. old)
  • 2004-11-22: CI activated (27 m. old)
  • 2004-10-04: Bi-lateral CI (26 m. old)
  • 2003-08: Deaf/HOH/CI Pre-school/"DEAF" Kindergarten (12m. old)
  • 2003-07: HA's fitted (11 m. old)
  • 2003-06: Diagnosed deaf. Start sign-language (10m. old)
  • 2002-11: Suspicion loss of hearing (4 m. old)
  • 2002-08: Born - A fierce LION
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