Thursday, January 6, 2011

So far this week

My 3yo niece had her first day with us yesterday. She is still very much in her phase. I think she said two, very whispered words to me. Other than that, it was all body language: shaking the head, nodding the head, holding things out to me. She talked to my kids just fine, but not me. And not the French class kids who came in the afternoon. One girl commented on how the 3yo wasn't saying ANYTHING. I told her she hadn't said anything to me yet that day. The girl's reply, "Oh, and she's known you for a long time." Yes, I've been babysitting her for over 2 years! lol. It's not shyness, it's something else. I don't know what.

I decided I needed to take a different approach with her. It hit me that trying to get her to respond the way she used to was not respecting where she *is* right now. So I talked to her, asked her questions, picked her up a few times just to pick her up... I'll keep doing this. Unconditional acceptance, as long as there isn't destructive or harmful behaviour.

I got my kids up late yesterday, and by the time my son was ready, the 3yo was here and since I saw he wanted to go off and play with her, I told him he didn't have to do work first thing. So, they played with the toy kitchen. :) And some other stuff. She was kept rather busy most of the day. At one point, she did take the Discovery Toys Mosaic Tiles and spent quite a bit of time with that. Not quite sure if she was just putting pegs in randomly or trying to make something.

It was definitely Hump Day yesterday: everybody sluggish, tired, like pulling teeth trying to help the 16yo through his work. French class went well, though. I sometimes feel resistance at having made this commitment, but once the kids are here and we are into it, it's fun and the kids are such great kids.

So far, school-wise, mine have only been doing some basics: math and some French, some map work, then I had dd do something from her art text. On Tuesday, she was moping around about "What can I work on?" So I pulled it out and had her do the first lesson in the grade 8 book. She's quite happy about it and wants to make sure to show our facilitator when she visits tomorrow. Just a smidgeon of direction is all she needs sometime.

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