Monday, December 14, 2009
So... was she just bored with the simplier equation and therefore not concentrating or what?
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Now that's using an unusual medium!
Monday, November 30, 2009
First of all, you can pick up a free backpack or art tube that contains different activities for the kids to do through out the museum. Morgan was overwhelmed by the choices (design an African mask, make special googles to help you hunt for foxes in an exhibit, make a cowgirl) so we passed on the backpack this time.
Even without the backpack there is plenty to do, just look for plaques with Seymour the mascot and you will find a kid friendly activity such as combining different African musical instrument to make a song, playing cowboy bingo, playing an Eye Spy Memory Game, creating your own postcard or scrap art, and building a sculpture as seen below.
Currently, there is a temporary exhibit called Embrass that has some really neat modern displays. My favorite was Chamber. It's a big room with projectors all around. At first, they project moving pixels but then the pixels turn into different words. These projections move through out the room. Some seem to flow out air vents and back in through a door. It's really neat to see. Morgan liked being in front of the projector and covering herself in pixels.
Hands down, Morgan's favorite thing was Tobias Rehberger's bungee room. It's an area filled with bungee cords where you try to push and pull your way through, finding little clearings along the way. You can't fall down if you try! We visited this spot three times between other exhibits. Morgan was having way too much to stop and take a picture so Gigi posed for me.
There are also spots to stop and rest and listen to music related to the exhibits.
We were there for three hours and only saw the first building. We did go to the second building to find the Kid's Corner but we were disappointed. There isn't much to do here: a matching shell game, a few costumes to put on, some blocks to build and a coloring sheet. We didn't stay in this room long. Next time we will just stick to all the activities in the main museum.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
You have to give her huge props for being so thorough. She's managed to cover ever inch of the floor.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
While practicing Morgan's song, she was singing Pandamonio. I spent way too long aruging with a 5 year old on whether the word was pandamonio or pandamonium. Nothing like a five year old telling me pandamonium didn't even make any sense. I finally had to tell her to ask her music teacher what she was supposed to be singing.
We also found out that Morgan was picked to be one of the four kids with a speaking part. We were thrilled but also surprised. This is the same girl who hides behind my legs, clings like crazy and grunts when a stranger says hi. She does, however, perform in front of all the parents in gymnastics when they have exhibition week so at least she has some experience. She's still not 100% sure she wants to do this. We told her she could think about it for a few days and then decide, but once she makes a choice next week, it will be final. Her lines are:
Quick, open the doors and let them all in! Then, at last, the fun can begin.
She already knows them fairly well so I think she'll do it. Her main concern about doing the lines was 1) being on stage by herself (which she won't) and 2) that she would still get to sing the songs with everyone else (which she still will). Will see next week what she's decided.
Monday, November 16, 2009
But once again, here it's OK. Here it is expect. Here she belongs.
Remember the story about the Princess and the Pea? After too many mornings of tears and frustration over getting dressed, the Queen finally called the town doctor for advice on how to deal with this behavior. The Queen and King were at their wits end on stopping this defiant behavior. And that is when the doctor informed them that the Princess had Sensory Processing Disorder or SPD.
What is SPD? It's a neurological issue where the body has difficulty processing information from the five senses, the sense of movement (vestibular system), and/or the positional sense (proprioception). It's like walking outside into the bright sunlight after being indoor and your first response is to squint and block the light with your eyes. After a few seconds, your body adjusts and you are fine. But for people that are over-responsive, their body's don't adjust. A misplaced seam on a sock can cause severe discomforted to the point where they can be writhing on the floor in literal pain. A pencil dropping on the floor can sound like a canon going off. And then there are those who are under-responsive to stimulation. They might not respond to a normal voice command, they might not notice smells that others complain about. Thirdly, SPD can manifest itself in seeking behaviors. A Seeker might intentionally fall on the floor or bump into items. A Seeker might crave "squishy" activities. Usually a person with SPD has a combination of these main elements.
Morgan's main diagnosis is tactial overresponsiveness, auditory underresponsiveness with vestibular and proprioception seeking.
She hates to walk on grass barefooted, claiming it's too itchy.
- She never liked playing in sandboxes.
- She complains that her seatbelt is too tight - even when it isn't.
- Hoodies, jeans, zippers, buttons, tights, socks, shoes and boots bother her.
- Her hair, shirt sleeve or shirt collar is always soaking wet from constantly chewing on it.
- She is constantly jumping on the furniture, crashing against the floors and walls.
- She inappropriately climbs on, clings to and enters other people's personal space - often accidently hurting someone.
- Once she gets excited, it appears as if she's lost all control of her body - she doesn't know where her limbs stop. She often trips and flops around.
- She spins constantly.
- She often sits upside down (hanging from the couch) and likes to be flipped.
- She has frequent, intense tantrums that last for an extensive period of time.
The list could go on and on but you get the gist of it.
I was a member of an online parenting community for the first several years. There was a group of us that had what we called "High Needs" children: children that needed more attention, more redirection, had more frequent and more out of control tantrum, and had excessive energy. Children that just didn't seem to be as easy to raise as the majority. I have since found out that two other kids from this group have SPD. I would not be suprised to find out that more of them have this.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Thursday, November 5, 2009
"I went to Minnesota and drank Sprite"
Looks like we could have saved ourselves hundreds of dollars and ten hours of flying. Are you kidding me???!!
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
We don't have many pictures of the trip since the days consisted of: eating, going to the kid's water park, eating, going to the beach, eating, going to the regular pool.
The kid's water park was great. There was lots for the kids to do, the water was shallow through out and Mark and I could relax along side it while Morgan made friends.
So it would only make sense that Morgan would prefer to the regular pool where she's unable to touch, can swim enough so that she's a danger to herself and needs to hang on one of us at all times. No relaxation here for the adults!
She tried snorkling for the first time and was a natural. The girl who can only swim a few feet and then frails around in a panick when she has to take a breath out of the water could swim the length of the pool with a snorkle in her mouth. It what a length it was! She would just slowly flutter along, as relaxed as could be.
We took a half day trip to Tulum. You can tell that Morgan was extremely excited to be here.
To her credit it was extremely hot and humid but still, she managed to put on the performance of her life time. After we had a Coming to Jesus talk with her and she calmed down, we stopped in the shade for a rest where there was another family having this conversation:
Father: I don't know why we bother trying to give them new experiences. They don't appreciate it and it's just a waste of money.
Mother: We should have just redone our kitchen instead. I mean look at them!
Mark and I exchange knowing glances and we moved on feeling a bit better knowing we weren't alone in our situation.
Morgan perked up a little bit when she got to get up close and personal with the local iguanas.
But it wasn't until we were back at the beach when Morgan really felt happy again.
Despite being pummetted by waves, she enjoyed Boogie boarding while Mark and I played goalie. One of stood between her and the ocean so she didn't get sweeped out and one of us stood between her and the beach so we could pick her up when she flounder around too much.
The grounds were beautiful with lots of lizards and igunana to see.
This is one of the many angels through out the courtyards outside the rooms.
Each afternoon Morgan was excited to discover what kind of towel animal the cleaning crew left behind.
We even got in a few rounds of putt-putt golf.
We made friends with a family from Mexico City who had two daughters 4 and 6 years old. Morgan asked the mom if she was Mexican. The mom said that she was half Mexican and half Chinesse, then asked Morgan what she was. Morgan shrugged her shoulders and stated "Regular". Looks like we'll be having to work on that one!
I think Morgan understood that she was in a different country and it was good for her to experience a different culture. She kept asking how to say different things in Spanish and wanted to know if they were going to celebrate Halloween. We explained to her about the Day of the Dead and was able to show her examples of what they did.
When we got home, we were faced with quite the climate change. Denver had received two feet of snow and was 20 degrees. Too bad Mark only packed flip-flops on the trip! We arrived home safely with our car stuck in snow, half in the driveway half in the street.
Friday, October 23, 2009
This morning, as we are on the way to school with snow on the ground, bundled up in winter jackets and hats, she makes a comment. I can't remember the specifics of the comment but it made me realize something. At that moment, I realized that she thought it was going to be snowy and cold in Mexico. And what fun is the beach going to be in the cold?
When I explained to her that it was still summer weather in Mexico, her level of enthusiasm shot straight up. She's now thrilled to be going and can't wait to hang out on the beach.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Unfortunately, for her report card, she did receive partially proficient in her writing. Nowadays, report cards are based on an assessment (test) given on a specific day, not on their overall ability that the teacher observes through out the weeks. So... if you have a stubborn little girl like we do, who decides on this particular day that she doesn't want to complete the assessment, you wind up with a partially proficient score. When she was writing her story, she drew herself and a lion but didn't not add details to show that she was at the zoo despite her teacher's coaxing. Below the picture she wrote "I WEN TO THE ZOO AD SW A LN" (I went to the zoo and saw a lion). Her writing is considered advanced but because she did not include details of the "where" in her picture (even though it was in her writing), she was marked down. The teacher told us that she usually completes the who/where/what requirement but since this was the assessment, there was nothing else she could do about the the report card score.
Welcome to the Public School System!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Some day she's going to be crushed when she finds out his favorite color is really green.