Monday, May 31, 2010

Home from Spectronics Conference

The Inclusive Learning Technologies was held last week over four days. Previously attending in 2008, the Conference was once again very well organised with speakers from overseas, a jam packed schedule with 6 concurrent sessions all day, various supplier stalls, and 750 people from across the globe enjoying the Marriott Surfers Paradise venue.
I probably didn't get as much out of it as the last conference but then again we are another 2 years down the track of providing technology options for Missy. It cemented some ideas that had previously been forgotten, to now try again, it provided some further information on the latest very expensive communication devices and where we may now head as Missy's Dynavox DV4 will soon be out of warranty as she has had it for 5 years now. We are currently trialling the Eco2 and in August will trial the Dynavox V(5) Max which by then we would have waited 11 months just to trial the device. By the time it's trialled and applications written the Dynavox VI(6) might be out.
We were given a thumb drive with lots of informations including all the presenters presentations with a CD to follow. We picked up a Step by Step communicator that has three levels,just a little quick system to use for greetings and other news that is easy to press when she driving around. . I also ordered some handy little talking brix, an updated version of a single message switch that don't run on batteries, we find these really handy by the toilet and other areas where you need to call from.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Cross Country Course Conquered

This week saw our school hold it's Cross Country Carnival,in a local national park. This was our first experience as Missy has now turned 8. The school didn't bother asking if Missy would like to go, they knew the answer to that.... she will be there!!!! The question was how could Missy have an inclusion experience when her mates would be running across and down hills over the banks of dams and up a hill called heartbreak hill.
I suggested maybe she would like to be the photographer for the carnival, well that met with a luke warm response, and we concluded that will have to see the course.
Upon arriving, she was quick to get in class lines and head off to walk the course... hey!!! better take your anchor man.....DAD. I didn't want to look as I'm a bit parniod about tipping the chair and stayed behind with H-Ho.

Well.... they made it back in one piece from the look and see, not without Dad swinging off the back of the chair to stabilise it. They was times she had fears about driving but she persisted knowing Dad was there.

Anyway hoping now that she had seen the course, she would take up the option of taking the photos...well this time it met with a have to be joking mum, I'm racing.
So off to the starting line she went, poised for the start, edging on the line, the 8 and 9 yrs girls were off. Within 200 metres they were out of sight heading down the hill, it didn't deter Missy she just keep driving with all of us in tow, Mum, Dad, H-Ho and Miss H.
We made it to the bottom of the hill - what a relief! now up the next hill. Missy steps up to 4th gear and H-Ho strides out with her and well, Mum is huffing and puffing, falling further behind. As we head up the hill the older kids who started later are making their way pass Missy offering words of encouragement thru their breathlessness "Keep going Missy" You are doing really well" "Way to go" and like all the kids crossing the finish line Missy and Heidi were cheered by their mates for conquering the course.
Oh! the joys it brought Missy to complete the course and just being part of what everyone else does, she expects nothing less and deserves nothing less.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Big effort in Naplan

Planning started long before the Naplan tests that filled last week.
Missy could have easily received an exemption from sitting the Naplan but.... never one to shy away from a challenge we forged ahead. Missy attends a mainstream school to experience all the regular activities that her peers undertake and the expectation from us and particularly Missy is that she will part-take in everything.
Our school Principal, school admin, teachers and Miss H (Teachers Aide) have supported us all the way with providing Missy with a inclusive platform where the tests are accessible and the test environment is conducive in allowing Missy's to show her potential, while maintaining a positive self esteem.
DET took a giant step forward by providing the Naplan test in PDF format and allowing it to be interactive. An interactive system that is familiar and accessible to Missy. Miss H had thought of everything as usual and put a great deal of effort into the preparation which we appreciated.
Of course Missy never lets anyone down with her efforts,and with her first real test experience she tackled and attempted every question.
So with that behind us, the results are not a priority, as our weekly correspondence with her teacher and aide provide more relevant and uptodate information.
We were really pleased with her effort and the fact she finished the days with her mates being able to share in the similar experiences is really important.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Blog Award

I was sooooo surprised to receive notice that our MissysCpJourney Blog had won the most Progressive blog award from ABR.
While always wanting to do a blog, so we could share information with others, Advanced Biomechnical Rehab provided the support and incentive to get started. The award entitles us to receive one months free ABR machine rental, which is about $350 worth.
Our statistics have been really interesting with over 1100 hits in our short existence and the number of OS visitors.
Thanks everyone for sharing in our blog and the joy Missy brings to our lives.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Another winning Photo

Missy entered some more of her photos in another local show last weekend and had a wonderful result. The photograph section was very large with over 100 entries in the Colour and B & W section for school students <18yrs. Missy won the B & W section with the included photo, how exciting - she is thinking how to spend the $20 prize money.