Friday, May 31, 2013

Successful Saturday: Packing + Autism Videos

Happy Successful Saturday! I had a whole post planned, and then I got sucked into clips of Katie Couric's Autism Awareness interviews, so you get to read my babble valuable information about that first!

I tried to pick a favorite, but I couldn't! I tried to get a YouTube version of them so you didn't have to keep clicking links, but I couldn't find these videos there, so click the links below for some great videos about autism and kids who have it.
Temple Grandin
Parenting a kid with autism (article + videos)
Living with Autism (a collection of videos on one page)

I have a confession to make...I had tears welling up in my eyes as I was watching these, but it had nothing to do with their stories of autism. It had everything to do with me! I have been teaching kids with autism for the last 4 years, but now I'm changing schools. I'll still be teaching special education, but the new school focuses more on learning disabilities. There will be very few kids around with autism. Tonight I just realized that makes me really sad! Is it possible to fall in love with a disability?

My kids are quirky! And I love everything that comes along with that! I love seeing the goofy way they look at the world. I love that today I honestly stopped class to let a kid ask a friend to roar like a lion because he's never asked a friend to do anything and this was a breakthrough! I love watching them finally start to make sense of the crazy world around them. I love that today I picked a kid up and twirled him in a circle when he spontaneously told me a story about his home life without prompting (once again, totally new experience!). I've never been so thrilled to hear about a parent going to the airport, Haha!

Now the thought of not working with these kids makes me a little sad. I am secretly THRILLED to be tutoring one of my little guys this summer. His parents asked about where to find a tutor and I said "I'll do it!!" I know some of these parents really need the extra help, so I really want to try and stay in touch with them and their kids. I have a great group this year, and I'll really miss them!

Okay, now on to my original Successful Saturday post...which is suddenly feeling a little boring. Sorry, my tangent on loving autism seems way more interesting than me packing up my classroom now.
I have exactly 5 school days left with the kids, and only 1.5 of those will be spent inside our classroom thanks to field day, a field trip, and the graduation/award ceremony we have to will happily attend on the last day of school. All of this leaves me very little time to pack up my classroom!

There is only 1.5 weeks between jobs and I don't want to sacrifice any of those days for boring packing when my kids won't even be in the room to miss seeing my junk. Besides, I just booked a wine country getaway the week after school gets out to celebrate my b-day and new job!

So this week's success was all the stuff I got done! Here's my "Yay! I did that already!" list:
  • report cards
  • common core standards progress reports
  • HUGE chunk of my packing (all bookshelves, minus the kids' books)
  • a TON of stuff is now in my shed and on my living room floor (as in I moved it from school to home)
  • social skills assessments (they are 10 pages long for each kid and took me HOURS!)
  • last minute parent conference both the parents and I forgot to reschedule after their kid got sick last month, plus planning for me to tutor him this summer
  • work samples, end of the year testing, and report cards have all been filed in the appropriate places
  • Most importantly...I BOOKED A VACATION! I'm going to spend 3 days at a spa in wine country!
So that's my success! What's yours?

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