Weekend Update Week 21

silhouette of pregnant standing on seashore during golden hour
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Hello after a vacation from making any posts at all! The picture above looks nothing like me, except the pregnant part. Especially since my weight loss goals were derailed first by a change in medication and then by becoming pregnant. But never fear! Someday I will get back down to my ideal weight! I have faith! If you’re interested, here’s my latest graph (which I find interesting because I like data).

Picture1

I’m eating plenty of healthy foods (my cravings lean mostly towards fruits and veggies – and in case you think that means I’m having a girl because you’ve been reading silly internet myths, it’s a boy). I have NOT been getting much exercise, though, because I first caught some nasty virus and then developed pneumonia. I’m on antibiotics now, so I’m slowly getting better. πŸ™‚ Luckily, my mother-in-law is in town helping out while I’m on recovery, so the housework is still getting done.

The kids have been doing great ever since M went on his meds for ADHD. Though the other day he requested to be homeschooled. He seems to associate school with being “bad.” We’re trying to convince him that first grade will be so much better because he’ll have the meds and the new social skills he’s been learning. Regardless, I have been doing research into other options. I’m certainly not ready to maintain my own curriculum on such short notice, but the online public school system looks promising. I don’t suppose anyone has feedback about Connections Academy, do they? I have read the reviews, and they seem mostly positive, though there are certainly some negative ones as well. I guess it all depends on the kid and how she learns. I will be going to an information session next week to determine whether this might be a good choice for me. A is skeptical, but M’s mom seems open to the idea.

While we’re on the subject of school difficulties, does anyone have experience with dysgraphia? We are concerned that D may be showing signs, and will be watching her carefully next year. She has very distressing writer’s block, poor legibility, and poor spelling. Of course, she’s just entering the third grade, so this may just be her natural progression. But I was just wondering if anyone out there has had experience?

Currently Reading

Currently Reading

I’ve gotten to the point where I’m reading too many books at once again. It’ll probably fade away with time, but for now I’m re-reading the Harry Potter series for some light reading, Handmaid’s Tale for some more literary fiction, No One Cares About Crazy People as a general nonfiction book, The Explosive Child, which was suggested by M’s ADHD assessor (and now seems unnecessary since he hasn’t thrown a temper tantrum in a couple of months), and What to Expect When You’re Expecting, for obvious reasons.

Completed

Completed

M read two Scholastic Branches books to me recently. They are presumably above his reading level, as they appear to be aimed at second graders and he’s going into the first. But for the most part he’s doing great. I need to help him with a word every now and then, but that’s no problem. I’m so proud of him!

I finished the second Harry Potter book and started the third. And I watched Game of Thrones Season 1 with A and my nephew J. Yeah, we got J’s mom’s approval before subjecting J’s young mind to all that sex and violence – but apparently that’s the kind of stuff she watches with him. J is now addicted and has moved on to season 4 himself. Season 1 is as far as I’ve gone.

julyreadaton1

Also, if I am recovered enough from my pneumonia, I will participate in Dewey’s Summer Readathon on 7/27-7/28. Check it out.

This links up to Sunday Post at Caffeinated Reviewer and Sunday Salon (on FB).

36 thoughts on “Weekend Update Week 21

    1. Thanks! It’s really nice that I’m not craving unhealthy foods. πŸ™‚ I agree that now is not the time to worry about weight gain, though they do have limits of how much they want me to gain during the pregnancy. As of now, I’m not in any risk of surpassing it, though.

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  1. Hope you’re feeling better and the pneumonia passes soon! I’ve thought about reading The Handmaid’s Tale since watching the first season of the show, but I just haven’t done that yet. I am curious about any changes between book and show.

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  2. I don’t know why educators think children must all be at the same point at the same time. I don’t think experienced teachers believe this, but the people who are in charge seem to do so.

    I hope you are feeling well enough to participate in the readathon. I hope to join in.

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    1. Hi Deb! Actually, the teacher didn’t complain about anything but her bad anxiety attacks while writing. D finds the writer’s block extremely distressing, which is why we’re thinking something more may be going on. She DOES have an anxiety disorder, but the attacks happen systematically while writing.

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  3. I can’t imagine anyone under like 25 watching Game of Thrones. πŸ™‚ The Handmaid’s Tale is one of my favorite reads; I actually teach it in my Intro to Lit course.

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  4. Congrats on your pregnancy, and you have quite an interesting book haul. I loved The Handmaid’s Tale, and actually read it twice. I’m now watching Season II of the show.

    Have a great week, and thanks for visiting my blog.

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  5. My experience with alternative learning is mainly with high school and middle school because I was too sick to regularly attend. I would make sure you talk with the school principal, they can write up specific documents (504 or IEP) that goes with your children. It basically states that your child has special needs and makes it so they get the help they need to get a good education. Lots of people have them (I got my 504 in the fifth grade, for example). Good luck! πŸ™‚

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    1. Yes, we appatently need at least a 504 for both kids, unless we move M to online. D’s problem is intense anxiety attacks while writing – but what do we say? Don’t pressure her to write? M has behavioral problems and although the meds have helped he associates school with being a bad person, leading to depression. It may be best to take him out of brick and mortar for a year and let him lose those associations (and his reputation at the school). Or we could try a 504…we’ll see.

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      1. Both kids have a therapist (one has ADHD with a lot of impulse control issues, and the other has an anxiety disorder that mostly shows up while writing, but is starting to show up elsewhere). We have also talked to the school counselor, who didn’t want to do an IEP for either child. But this year we’re more knowledgeable on the subject and will advocate for the kids better.

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  6. Congratulations on the baby! It sounds like you’ve been busy. That mental health book sounds interesting. I’ll have to look it up. Harry Potter and The Handmaid’s Tale are some of my favorite books ever. Have a great week!

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  7. I’m glad you are eating healthily – it will certainly help you through your pregnancy, though I’m sorry to hear you are struggling with pneumonia right now.

    As for the third-grade child – if she is rather anxious anyway, she may be very distressed to find she cannot form the letters as she wishes to. One of the things that struck me when teaching children, is how afraid they are of failure and getting things wrong. We now live in a world where no one sees ‘a work in progess’. Toys, clothes, household utensils are all factory-made and highly finished. Only a couple of generations ago, children saw examples of half-finished articles all around them and knew it took a degree of practice and time to become skilled. Now they don’t see any of that – it isn’t uncommon for children, particularly intelligent, driven souls, to dissolve into tears when they can’t get it right first time – and I’ve no reason to believe the situation has improved since I moved away from teaching children and onto adults… While she may be suffering from dysgraphia, I think it is far more likely that she is just really upset that she cannot write as neatly as she wants to.

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    1. Thanks for the thoughtful perspective. D has an anxiety disorder, so it may be all we’re seeing is her anxiety acting out in a very specific way. But finding a solution before she gets a permanently negative associations is preferable.

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      1. If you can, I’d try and lighten up the whole business. Take a line for a walk with her, colouring in the spaces with as few colours as possible – it’s quite fun to do, even for the adults, so make it a game. There are some weirder fonts on computers with uneven lettering – give her a chance to see those. How to Train Your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell is interspesed with drawings featuring some really bad writing, ink blots as it is designed for children who find writing a struggle… As a child, I loved writing stories but my handwriting was abysmal as I was a lefthander – a source of great sorrow to me. And I didn’t have computer fonts to compare my efforts against…

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      2. Lol, I tried to get her started on tbe How to Train your Dragon series. I loved it. But she prefers books with princesses and popular girls. 😁 I don’t read those at all, so it’s hard to suggest books to her.

        I have certainly not pointed out her hand writing to her or put a name to it. Don’t want to make her more sensitive. Unfortunately, it’s the actual composing of stories that upsets her (writer’s block). She hasn’t commented on her legibility, though she has seen her report cards. So it’s hard to pinpoint what exactly she’s anxious about, as she’s not articulate. We’ve tried doing a round robin with me, her dad, and her, and that actually worked, so it’s something about having a blank sheet of paper in front of her, it seems. πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ

        She very well might not have dysgraphia, I was hoping (successfully) to find someone who knew a kid with dysgraphia so I could get a better impression. I’m also finding your perspectives quite helpful, so I’d say throwing out a virtual blanket worked.

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      3. To be honest, I think it’s very early to try and get a diagnosis – so many youngsters at that age really struggle to put anything on a page. Another suggestion – try varying the media – maybe very thick pencils with triangular grips, or nice chunky sharpies – and try a whole range of colours. Especially if you sit down and also join in… You might also try her with coloured paper – white is very daunting. But my best advice is to try and make it fun – it sounds like you are doing all the right things anyway. But the high likelihood is that she is just finding the whole business of putting her ideas on paper really worrying, which isn’t uncommon at that age.

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  8. Those are some good ideas I hadn’t considered. Though if we join in with ideas she says we’re pressuring her and has an anxiety attack.

    Kids with dysgraphia find composing easier with a keyboard. She is very willing to try that out. She says she doesn’t have anxiety while using computers. Even if it’s not dysgraphia, if it solves her problem that’ll make me happy. But then we’d need a 504 or IEP (which is possible due to her already diagnosed anxiety disorder) to let her use one in school. So we need to be sure it works first.

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  9. My oldest had dysgraphia, but things got MUCH better for her when she was able to start typing. She’s now a fantastic writer. Her handwriting is still pretty horrible, but with more and more emphasis on computers, it doesn’t seem to matter much.

    Also, I homeschooled my two older kids for seven years (the youngest has some pretty specific special needs that I didn’t feel equipped to address), and it was a great experience for all of us. My middle child is starting back in public school for high school, but I’m so glad we had those years of homeschooling. πŸ™‚

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    1. Yeah, after finding another person whose child had dysgraphia, we have chosen to teach her how to type. She says that she’ll feel much less anxiety that way. Time will tell. I hope it’s true.

      The younger, M, decided he didn’t want online school after all. That was kind of a relief, as he needs practice on his social skills. It was also nice because he’s the one who feels his life is totally out of his control, and giving him a choice empowers him. So we’re all happy about that.

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  10. I hope that you’re feeling better now. Congrats on your pregnancy!

    I’ve been thinking about re-reading The Handmaid’s Tale ever since Hulu started airing their series. I keep getting distracted by newer books but one of these days, I’m really going to do it, lol.

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