Thursday, June 28, 2012

No more pencils, No more books.... more teacher's dirty looks! (all jokes people!)

Hi there!

(note this is not a scrapbooking or card making post - just that of a mom who loves her little guy - though he may not translate it as such!)

Today is the last day of school here in South Western Ontario !  And I am happy to have my little guy home with me for the summer, we have lots of plans to swim, boat, play in the sand and have friends join us at our trailer!

But.... (there is always a 'but' people!) ....remember what I said about the "no more pencils, no more books", well not so much for my guy.  You see Timmy has recently been diagnosed with a couple of learning disabilities, we knew it.  In our heads we knew it and we sought out the diagnosis so that he will have the help he needs to achieve in school, next year and the years after that.  In our hearts, we hoped for the best, life can be hard enough... so who needs any extra struggles.

Without going into too many details, he basically has a processing issue, a memory issue, and a reading issue.  Thankfully, he excels in some areas too.  In both comprehension and math he scores well above the average kid.  I am thankful for this, as it makes him aware and bright and also gives him something that he can be truly proud of while he struggles to catch up in other areas.

So, during the summer we need to continue to do regular academic tasks.  We need to continue to read, often, because of his memory problem - he truly will lose a skill if he doesn't continue to repeat it - so all those little words that we read by memory as they don't really have a 'meaning' well he needs to read them more often to commit them into his long term memory.  He needs to continue to practice his writing as his penmanship leaves a little to be desired.  He needs to continue to practice portraying his thoughts in the written form; putting in punctuation, capitals, verbs, nouns etc., all where they belong.  He needs to practice his speech patterns and his story telling.  27 word run on sentences with no punctuation and random capitalization, just don't cut it!   ;)

Now comes my part, my job as his Mom is to come up with a fun, easy, quick way for him to do all of this.  Without him feeling like he is spending the day in school.  Still leaving loads of play time, time for adventures, exploring, having new experiences and making good memories.

I started out by making a list of things I needed / wanted to incorporate into this summer program.

-printing and pencil coordination
-journaling and story writing
-math (yes he is good at it so he should keep doing it to hone the skills and to have an activity that is easier for him)
-book reports

This is what I came up with when I incorporated all of these items.....

 I started out with an American Crafts 8.5x11 scrapbook album.
 Then I added in some extra inserts.... a reading log.
 Book report pages.
printing practice sheets
Pages with writing prompts and little drawing spots.
Subtraction sheets.
Addition sheets.
and  division.
 Drawing and doodling pages, really great for hand dexterity.  Thank you Pinterest for these particular sheets.
 And finally, some scrapbook pages, with journaling cards.

 I also gathered up some leftover scrapbooking supplies from my craft room.  So he can add some pizzazz to his pages.
 Then I gathered his scrapbooking tools, and added in a date stamp for fun.
 Can't forget the books.   This will make a good start, we can swap them out when we need to and there is a great little used book store not too far from our trailer park.
 And it all fits nicely into these two bins!  Perfectly portable, and compact.

 Now the goal is to make this an almost daily part of our routine.  Maybe after breakfast, while he is fresh... we'll see.  I want it to be quick 15-30 minutes, I want it to be flexible, I want him to mix up the tasks from day to day.  And I want it to be fun.  That is why I incorporated the scrapbooking element.  He loves crafting, and I am hoping he will enjoy it so much, he won't realize that I am making him write / journal!

In order to make it fun and current, I am adding these to his 'kit'....
 An Olympus rugged, waterproof (underwater) camera.  It takes fabulous outdoor photos, videos and can be used at the beach, in the lake or pool.   Great for boating as it has a floating strap. 

And an Epson Picturemate Charm photo printer, love this little baby!  I bought it with this project in mind, but heck, Mom can use it too, right?

I am hoping that his love of crafting and photo taking coupled with the ability to print pictures instantly - will push him to want to document his happenings.

I also have a couple of programs on his and my laptop, that he can work on too.

I have shown Timmy all of this, he didn't think it was too horrible, so wish us luck!  The things we do for our kids!  I am passionate about his academic success, but I am hoping that it doesn't translate to "my crazy mother pushes me too hard"  Really it is just about 'personal bests', finding, achieving and maintaining them.

If you are still here, thanks for sticking with me!  If you do anything like this for your children I would love to hear from you... am I missing something?  Do you have any advice?

Hah, I already remembered something that I forgot... pencils!   Off to get them now!

Thanks for visiting me today, I really appreciate it.



  1. What an awesome and organised lady you are. I think he will really enjoy doing these things because you are making it fun. TFS

  2. Great ideas. I plan on working on Hawksley's printing this summer as he gets so frustrated with it - I love the idea of using some scrappy supplies to jazz up the work and make it more interesting. We also borrowed readers from his classroom as he is loving the reading so I wanted to keep that ball rolling. If memory is a challenge for Timmy, does exercising it help? Maybe if after he has taken some pics with the camera, you could make a memory game for him - you know the ones where there are two of every year and you flip them over? Timmy's Summer Memories Memory Game! Thanks for the inspiration as always.


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