Sunday, July 3, 2016

Graduating from Giant Steps and Interviewing Max.

This last month has been full of a lot of emotions.  As a mom I have felt sadness, happiness, loneliness and pure joy as I have watched Max graduate from Giant Steps.
When he started Giant Steps Autism Preschool a year and a half ago I was scared.  The future was daunting.  I wanted so bad for Max just to look at me and say "I love you." 
With the help of amazing teachers, especially Amber, Max has grown and developed so much more than I could have ever foreseen 18 months ago.
Above picture:  Max's first day of Giant Steps November 2014.
Below picture:  Max and Mrs. Amber on Graduation day June 2016. 

Max still has a lot of growing and developing to do.  He is still socially and emotionally behind typical children his age.  He will receive speech therapy and occupational therapy (for his food and sensory issues) in kindergarten next year and for many years after. Max is working very hard on his reciprocal communication instead of just repeating what you asked him.
For example:
Mommy:  How are you doing Max?
Max:  How you doing Max?
Mommy:  How old are you Max?
Max:  How old Max?
*We are working on him actually answering these questions instead of simply repeating them.

I sat down next to Max while he was playing with his new pirate ship, garbage truck, and castle and also watching the iPad (Yes he does all of these at the same time) to ask him the following questions: 
*All answers are exactly what Max said (or what Max did) to answer each question.

1. What is something mommy always says to you? A toy mom!
2. What makes you happy? A happy! 
3. What makes you sad? I love the T-rex when sad
4. What makes you laugh? I love laugh
5. How old are you? Angry
6. How old is Mommy? You happy mom
7. How old is Daddy? Its good.  
8. What is your favorite thing to do? toys!
9. Who is your best friend?  Daddy
10. What do you want to be when you grow up? everything
11. What are you really good at? Happy
12. What are you not very good at? (head butts me in the arm)
13. What did you do today? a toy!
14. What is your favorite food? strawberries.
15. What is your favorite song? Charlie Brown (music from the Peanut movie)

16. What do you want for your birthday this year? I love presents!
17. What is your favorite animal? Ankylosaurus* 
18. What is love? I love the present ankylosaurus.  (He didn't get this dinosaur for his birthday, we failed as parents this year...)
19. What does daddy do for work? I love happy birthday!
20. Where do you live? big trunk
21. Where is your favorite place to go? I love the school the bus.  

I love my Max with all my heart.  He is the coolest.  He makes me such a proud mom.  And I can't wait for his kindergarten adventures next year. 

*If you are interested in knowing what an Ankylosaurus is click this link.
And if you see one in the wild, please make sure to take a picture (or buy it) for Max, his parents will pay you back.   

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