Tuesday morning bright and early the Early Intervention team arrived to assess Brendan’s gross, motor, fine , cognitive,social & emotional and communication/speech skills. To say this was a stressful day is putting it lightly luckily Devin was home with me for the meeting. There were 3 women and they simply played with Brendan, asked us questions and came up with a plan to help Brendan. Because he is a preemie he automatically qualifies for services with Early Intervention. We started off with the rundown on my pregnancy, his birth and his life up until this point.
Things he would do: stack blocks, turn pages in book, “write” with a pencil, put object in cup, remove object from cup, turn pages in a book, hide n seek with an object under a cloth.
Things he couldn’t do: feed a baby doll, stir spoon in cup, put lid on cup, mimic sound, follow direction, point to body parts.
After that they wanted to see him eat which is when we discovered that he doesn’t chew like a “normal” toddler, shocking! We found this out by giving him a cracker. When Brendan eats he takes a bite and let’s it soften in his mouth before chewing whereas toddlers/grown-ups start chewing immediately. So this is something that we are set to work on immediately.
That’s the short of the visit. So basically what it all boils down to is Brendan qualifies for every service they offer because he has a delay in every area. Now this does not mean he has a severe delay in every area but it’s enough that they want to work on it and make sure he doesn’t fall more behind and we (me and Devin) are okay with that.
Brendan will be receiving speech therapy, going to a playgroup every week with other EI kids, storytime and we are going to once again enroll him at Rolly Pollie this coming Summer.
The team also suggested getting rid of some of his toys. No, not throwing them away but putting them away for a bit and just leaving the ones out that don’t make noise. The theory is that children these days don’t need to talk because the toys make noise for them. This theory makes total sense to me so we are going to put a lot of his toys away for now.
To help with his eating the team suggested feeding him foods that can be cut into strips: toast, green beans, carrots, cheese puffs, etc. So we got Snikkidy Snack fries (organic), pretzel sticks and will be getting more stick foods this coming weekend at the grocery store.
Work with him on teaching him his body parts, basic children’s songs (itsy bitsy spider, wheels on the bus, etc) by doing the motions. Also speech therapy will be teaching us some sign language to help lessen not only Brendan’s frustration but ours while he is trying to communicate with us.
The team was so nice and helpful they will be back again in 6 months to check his progress. We have an official copy of Brendan’s IEP (individualized education plan) and a plan so here’s to hoping we have a communicating chatterbox in the coming months!
****** The team did give permission for me to take and use their pictures for this blog *****