Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Little Puzzles

Being an aide to a special needs child can prove challenging. I'm so thankful for this job, but sometimes I feel so inadequate.

Nurturing and interacting with small children feels very natural to me, but when you take a 3-year-old with the capacity of a 9-12 month old (so I'm told), all of a sudden techniques that generally work don't work anymore, and you have to start thinking differently.

One of the teachers is so good about explaining how certain children process certain things and really offers a lot of insight.

I was playing in the play area with my little one and she came over and told me that this may be the most difficult area to work in. We need to teach these kids appropriate play: baby is hungry, let's feed baby; put the car on the track and make it go down; stack one block on the other, etc. as these kids often get into their own little world and don't play with toys with a purpose in mind. Interesting...and helpful.

Later on the playground, I got my little one to play for a long time in the sandbox, not just letting sand sift through her fingers, as usual, but actually scooping sand with a shovel into a pail.

There is so much I want to know and learn about this little one so that I can help her to the best of my ability. I think each special needs child is kind of like a one-of-a-kind jigsaw puzzle. They have their own secrets on how they work and the rest of the world has to figure them out.


Momza said...

You were meant to work with special needs children--that is easy to see.
Not every one has the patience or courage to extend themselves like you do.
As a parent of a special needs child, I am thankful for loving people like you.
So thank you. You are wonderful.

Holly said...

You are going to be such a blessing to these children.

Rose said...

I agree with the other comments. It is clear you have a heart for this work, it shows and makes all the difference for these kids! It makes me think of that quote that goes something like this: "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but they will never forget the way you made them feel."