With a new year comes the usual assessing of life and goal setting for myself and Isaac. But first I want to highlight some of the improvements I've seen in Isaac recently.
1) Communication: He's getting better at answering yes or no questions, asking open ended questions, and using more complex sentences. He is needing me to translate less for him and for the people talking to him.
2) Independence: He's the most comfortable he's ever been with people other than me. I can drop him off with a sitter, or in the church nursery, or let a friend drive him in their car without him freaking out that I'm not with him. He will more readily let other people help him with things instead of insisting that "mommy does it". (He even let Uncle Peter help him wipe over Christmas break. You're welcome, Uncle Peter!)
3) Play: I've witnessed him playing with peers more, rather than just parallel playing. Let's just say he's already playing doctor with a certain little girl named Mara. And as I've said 100 times before, he is constantly using his imagination.
4) Developmentally: He can say most of his ABCs correctly. He sings songs and nursery rhymes. He associates numbers as something more than a sequence. He knows all his colors and shapes. He can write a few letters of the alphabet. He can draw faces, trees, and cars. He can name all of his friends from school while at home.
All of this is AWESOME! My goal for 2011 is to help him do more of the same, more consistently. The best way I've found to do this is a whole lot of one on one play. He got a lot of that from his uncles over Christmas break and the result was that his speech went through the roof. They definitely tapped into his sensory play needs, which in turn freed up his mind to do some talkin'. While I doubt I'll be giving as many dragon rides as they did, I have been busting out the play-doh and play foam a little more often. I am going to try to get him down in the basement and more interested in his slide, swing, and trampoline (when it gets fixed) and really work on honing his sensory diet in a more intentional way. I've found that I've kind of gotten off track with the "intentional" part. It's pointless to own all the tools, have a sensory room, and not be consistently using them. To answer your question about what a sensory diet is, please click the link below: