Monday, March 05, 2007

March 5, 2007

The Sooner Start team came out today to evaluate Benjamin. They were here at 10:00am and left around 11:30am, I think. I was thinking that our sons might be ready to go to one nap a day and I now know that this is definitely not the case. They aren't ready for this yet. They could barely eat lunch today because they were so tired and cranky.

Back to the Sooner Start evaluation, the following information is from their documentation:

"Infants and toddlers from birth to thirty-six months of age who have developmental delays are eligible for services. Developmental delay in Oklahoma means:
1) The child has a diagnosed physical or mental condition that has a high chance of resulting in a delay, or
2) The child's developmental age is 50% below the child's actual age in one area or 25% below in two or more areas of development.

The areas of development assessed are:
adaptive (self-care, personal responsibility),
cognitive (attention and memory, reasoning and academic skills, perception and concepts),
communication (receptive, expressive),
physical (gross motor, fine motor, perceptual motor), and
social (adult interaction, peer interaction, self-concept and social role).

Cognition includes skills that help the child to solve problems and increase memory. Communication development includes learning skills that help the child to understand others and share thoughts, needs and feelings. Physical development involves skills used for movement, vision and hearing. Social development includes skills used to interact with others."

There were three people who came out. Two of them did the evaluation and the third is our resource coordinator, who is our point of contact for everything. He came alone for the initial visit a couple of weeks ago and gathered all of our information. He will be back tomorrow for Nick's evaluation, along with one of the ladies who was here today. The other lady who was here today won't be here tomorrow but someone else will be.

They did a great job and the boys felt very comfortable with them. Ben and Nick behaved very normally, for the most part. Many times when unknown people are around, the boys are clingy and stay close to me. These folks came in and sat down on the floor, unpacked their unique toys and the boys felt very comfortable playing with them and around them. It was great.

They gathered some information from interacting directly with Ben and some information they gather from asking me questions. I think they were here for about an hour and a half. After they finished gathering their info, they showed me the forms and results, along with a standard deviations curve, showing the typical range and various above and below ranges where scores can fall.

As expected, since he has only been around English speakers for a short time, Ben is farthest behind in his communications skills and this score alone was enough to qualify him for services, which means he has at least a 50% delay in this area. He also has at least a 25% delay in both adaptive and social skills, which also would have qualified him for services.

He scored better than I thought he would in his physical/motor skills. They said he is right on track with his fine motor skills and that children normally develop their pincer grip between 15 and 18 months of age. We thought he was behind on this, since Nick had this skill at 12 months of age. I definitely need to read up more on this stuff. Ben is at least 25% delayed in his gross motor skills but they really aren't worried about that since he is catching up so quickly, his muscle tone is great and his over all score for motor skills was decent.

He scored higher than they expected in his cognitive skills. I guess because he is so far behind in his communication skills and because of his background, they were surprised at his cognitive skills, so that is good news.

Tomorrow they will come back to evaluate Nick and see if he qualifies for any services. My best guess is that he will be furthest behind in his communication skills also. I will be surprised if he is very far behind in anything else but we'll see.

Once they finish evaluation Nick, they will have a staff meeting to decide which therapists will be best to meet our needs and then they will work with us on scheduling. They will work with us on goals and also teach us how to best help and teach in the areas where we have delays.

So far, so good. I really like these people a lot.


MMrussianadoption said...

I am glad they will be getting the services they need. NJ no longer has these services for free. We are like the only state that doesnt' since our budget is so sucky. Oh well.

catrina said...

Hi Lea,
I posted last night about the gratitude challenge I'm doing, because truthfully I need to be reminded everyday to be thankful, otherwise I get easily overwhelmed.