Monday, 29 April 2013

Kindy Boy

Who needs a slide when you can go
down the stairs...
Today was Felix's first morning back at his Special Needs Playgroup, since the school holidays. I was looking forward to taking him because, apart from Noah's party, he hasn't had anything to do with other little ones for a couple of weeks. I was hoping he hadn't regressed to being nervous around other children but, unfortunately, he had.

Felix seemed happy enough when we arrived at playgroup; he was smiling when I got him out of the car, but once I tried to put him on the floor, he wasn't so excited. He clung to me and, when I managed to remove him from around my neck, he lay face down on the floor. He's so funny, because he doesn't seem upset anymore when he does that (occasionally even giving some of the adults a sneaky smile from between his fingers), but he just shuts himself off completely from the other kids.

With his much loved monkey and
sock cat
When it was time for singing and a story, Felix suddenly came out of little imaginary cave. He can't resist singing and stories. He even shouted out "ee, i, ee, i, oh" when he thought we were going to sing Old MacDonald. He looked a bit confused when we sang another animal song instead, though. He has learnt some of the signs for the welcome song, and now signs his name (the letter 'F' twice), when we ask him what his name is. I'm so proud! After the singing, Felix reverted back to his face down position on the floor for the rest of the session. He wasn't interested in playing with anything, but seemed content just laying there. When it was time to go, he waved to everyone and blew kisses. He's such a funny little boy sometimes.

I hate to admit that Felix is growing up and won't be little forever but, today, I worked up the courage to call the Kindergarten, close to where we will soon be living, to enquire about enrolling him. I didn't think he would be starting until he was four, which would mean he would start at the beginning of 2015, but I found out he is eligible to start halfway through next year. Apparently children with a disability are able to start half a year earlier and attend either full time (15 hours a week), or part time, depending on what suits the child at the time. It was a huge shock to think that in a year's time, he could be a Kindy boy! I'm sure he will love it and it will be much harder on me than him.

Testing out the new kitchen drawer
I had a long talk to the Director of the Kindergarten and was really impressed with what she had to say. She is really excited to meet Felix and encouraged me to bring him in, as soon as we move, to meet the staff, and continue to do so over the coming year so he becomes familiar with the place. She was keen to learn some signing to make the transition easier for him, and her whole attitude towards children with differing abilities was so positive and inclusive. I was really impressed! She also told me about local programs for pre-schoolers, in the area, including a playgroup, kindergym, and story time at the local library. It sounds like we will have lots to do to keep us busy, and it will be a lovely community for Felix to be part of.

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