Monday, April 14, 2014
So today I got to substitute for Juliana's class. I love getting to see Juliana in her environment at school and how the other kids interact with her. It was really cool to see them during Daily 5 station rotations how all the girls fought over who's turn it was to read with Juliana. Awesome to see her rocking out her word work with her aide. But the thing I found probably most interesting was during inside recess. So the kids go to recess directly following lunch. Most days Juliana misses recess because I'd prefer she get enough time to eat. Kids typically get 30 minutes for lunch, which by the time they sit down and then add in clean up time they really only get 20 minutes which is definitely not enough time for Juliana. So I brought the kids back to class for inside recess while Juliana and her aide finished lunch. Some kids played legos, some played computer games and some played school. The kids that were playing school started announcing who would be the teacher, who would be the principal and then the shocker. They were fighting over who would be Juliana and who would be Ms. Bustos (her aide). Initially I was going to jump to "Defensive Momma Mode" and immediately go over and tell them to stop and how disrespectful that would be. But luckily I forced myself to wait and see how this was going to play out. And guess what, it was pretty cool. The child that "played" Juliana did so in a very respectful way. They did not portray her in any negative manner. They spoke to "Juliana" in the same way they did to all the other "students" expect "Ms. Bustos physically helped "Juliana" with each activity. They managed to represent her completely accurately. Completely competent, completely aware and just in need of physical assistance. It was actually quite beautiful. I was so proud of these kids, their compassion and their understanding of my beautiful daughter. So glad I let the kids play.