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January 2012- Ruben returns back to school

Having had a few weeks off over the Festive period, Ruben has struggled to get back into the swing of school! Ruben is still very keen and happy to go to school however does not like to talk much about it once he returns home...Again Ruben is having good days and not so good days, whereby he is not cooperating as the teachers would like him to. They also feel that he is not mixing as well as VI teacher has suggested that Ruben is assessed by the communication team as she feels he has traits of ASD. At this moment in time both Rob and I feel that Ruben is making sense of his new environment and surroundings and does struggle to build relationships with new people especially children of his age as he is so much more advanced with his speech and language skills which I feel has a massive impact and he is such a bright little button that I also feel he gets bored and frustrated and does tend to show behaviours that are quite challenging at times, but we feel that it is still early days to be sure if there are any more issues and this will be more apparent as he matures with age. However we are all for this assessment as the school is finding their strategies in dealing with h is behaviour is not effective any more so any support they can get for both them and Ruben is a positive thing. The assessment is due in April, until then we will work closely together in terms of dealing with any issues.

February 2012

Ruben is taking an interest in his Perkins Braille and sits there at his little table working his little fingers on the keys. We are encouraging him to use all the keys and not to get into bad habits, Ruben is also able to identify letters such as a, r, and has used the term 6 cell with is when he uses all his keys on the brailler! Ruben is sent home with homework where he will read Braille which will be the letter a and then as he sweeps along his fingers he will shout out when the letter changes to a c perhaps which is great to see as it is clear that he has sensitive fingertips to read the Braille. Very proud of our little man... Ruben seems more settled now both in school and at home, We find that Ruben needs routine and good sleep as with all children and have been giving him lots of praise and rewards for his good behaviour rather than focusing on all the negative behaviour and this seems to work very well. I have done Ruben a chart and when he has had a good day we put a sticker on it and at the end of the week he gets to do something of his choice, which we know already what that is, Train ride, and bus ride!! March 2012- Sensory room

Visually Rubens bedroom was the perfect nursery, warm colours with matching teddy bear walls, curtains, rug etc...However to Ruben this room of his was just dull and boring! So I decided that this bedroom was going to be livened up and brought to life! I decided that the theme was going to be asked around trains! As this was certainly Ruben's favourite past time! The I decided that I would give him a room whereby the train would run through hills and valleys and what experiences he would see. I worked on getting ideas and different textures and with a little help from Granddad Graham whom made the train with moving wheels, Sally who made a beautiful Apple tree made with real bark, and Nanny Kath and Hayley whom both helped me paint and stick on all the tactile objects in a day whilst Ruben was at school. We finally had a beautiful sensory room. This room had three walls which were themed. The first had a rail track, Train, farm animals, clouds, rainbow, sun and flowers, grass and this was all very real like and tactile. The second wall had a stable with a pony, hay stack and apple tree which had a wooden fence surrounding! And lastly we had a pond with pebbles and swans. Ruben was extremely happy and very excited to have this room that had come to life, he has continued to spend many hours of fun relaxing and playing in his room more than ever. He is very proud of his room! April- Easter break to Butlins

We decided to take the boys to butlins (Minehead) for the Easter holidays. Ruben was excited that he was going somewhere new and had heard stories about butlins from Nanny & Grandad Graham. We stayed in an apartment which Ruben named it our holiday home and this was a lovely stay. Ruben and Theo shared a room and big bro Theo decided to push the single beds together as he did not want Ruben to fall out of his bed throughout the night! Bless him. They both got on really well and enjoyed days out to the beach, fair, swimming, and evening entertainment @ the club whereby Ruben was able to have a little boogie on the dance floor. This was a time where we could really see that Ruben was becoming more mature and independent as he wanted to dance alone next to all the other children and overall he behaved extremely well. This was a great break away for all the family.

May- communication assessment

The communication team have been in the school and observed Ruben and on this occasion did not have enough evidence to say that Ruben has any form of ASD, however the QVIT is still convinced that Ruben may have a form of ASD. The communication team are due to visit again once Ruben has settled into reception class to see if there are still the same concerns and issues in terms of his social skills. Again I feel that it may be too soon to diagnose Ruben with ASD as the traits he portrays are that commonly linked with children that are born blind. A few of these are repetitive and fixations on activities, social skills with peers of his own age, walking on tip toes.

School holiday's-July 2012-Ruben's Graduation

Ruben has now graduated from the resource base nursery and will be starting reception on his return! Ruben seems to understand that he will be starting big school after the school holidays, he has been visiting his class Teacher and room that he will be in, however will again be meeting a new set of peers so this will be another hurdle and big up heave for him to contend with, however he will have the same support teachers thankfully! During the six weeks holiday Ruben was very settled and relaxed throughout making the most of his day's..looking forward to his summer holiday to Majorca!! August- Majorca We took a Ten day All inclusive holiday with Thomas cook to Majorca.. Ruben was very anxious prior to the flight but at the same time very excited about this event. Ruben was so excited he hardly had any sleep as our flight was @ 7am so had to be @ Birmingham by 5am with Ruben falling to sleep by about 12pm he had maybe 4-5 hours sleep! Ruben was excellent until he was seated on the plane and as soon as the engine started his hands covered his ears and did get a little upset. He had predicted himself that he may get upset and cover his ears! It probably took a good hour before Ruben removed his hands and relaxed more. Then he seemed happy and appeared to be enjoying it. Whilst we were in the air the hostess had seen how Ruben was upset and asked if he would like to meet the captain once we had landed which Ruben was extremely happy and excited about. Ruben met the captain and was able to look all around and ask questions of which the captain was more than happy to answer. It was excellent how Thomas cook staff treated Ruben and made the whole experience exciting and more relaxed. We stayed in an all inclusive complex which was our first and was located in one of the hotels which was very cramped as there were just 2 rooms 1 being the bathroom and the other bedroom/living area! However Ruben was very happy as he got to share a bed with his big bro Theo.. this was a very busy complex, consisting of 3 hotels of which we could use either one. We settled in pretty quickly and got to know the place and Both Ruben and Theo really started to enjoy themselves. We also managed to get Ruben into the kids club whereby he had 1-1 support from a man named Disco Dave and Jem bob square pants of which he found amazing! They were actually great with Ruben and really took to him and Ruben was very happy to have a break whilst me and his Dad was able to relax in the sun and top up the tan! Theo was in his element as he met friends and coach from his football team so linked up with these and went to the water park which was all inclusive too. We had many a day's on the beach which is fantastic for children. We enjoyed nights around the complex and also out on the town. We found a bar called the Jolly Roger whereby Ruben really took to the owner and named her Nanny Jan. However Nanny Jan had said that she would show Ruben her washing machine, wrong thing to say to Ruben as he would not let us forget it and with time running out when we had arranged to go back, nanny Jan was not there and we were due home so unfortunately he never did get to see her washing machine so was very upset by this. He has said quite few times that he misses his nanny Jan but I believe that he really means he missed seeing the washing machine!! September 2012-Ruben starts Reception Class J

Ruben was quite excited about starting his new class as we had talked about this quite a bit leading up to the day. The first day was quite an emotional one for me seeing Ruben in his school uniform, he just looked so grown up and was so ready to go! All I could do was put him in the taxi and say goodbye, which is difficult to do but on the other hand Ruben was absolutely fine. Ruben had a great first day at school and has settled in very well so far so good.