21 May, 2007

Quite a Bit of Independence

When I meet Jake in front of our house as he gets off the short bus I always grab his blue Lands End backpack first. I want to read the notebook inside. I want to read it while he is still buckled in the seat on the bus, possibly before I even smile and say welcome home. Because Jake can't exactly tell me what he did at school, that notebook is the only way I know whether he ate his lunch, played nicely, wet his pants, stole his friend's cracker, had a bm, went to the library... I want to read it so I can talk to Jake about his day and fill in both sides, so we are having a conversation. I put Jake in his car seat then as I am walking back to the driver's side I grab the notebook and read the 4-5 sentences quickly so I can have the information when I get back into the car.

I say, "So you went to the library today".
Jake says, nothing, but he squints his eyes, which I think, am fairly certain, means "yes".

"And you sat with your friend from the other class"?

It doesn't say this in the notebook. I am guessing, but Jake does not squint, instead he purses (is that the right word) his lips together, which may, or may not mean "no".

and so on, until we drive up the steep drive and around to the back of our house.

There are days when the notebook says sad things, like "very hard time transitioning today". Or perhaps, "Jake had a rough morning, but settled down after lunch."(there really isn't that much time after lunch before leaving school!)

But today the note read
"Jake did amazing during circle this morning. He came up and took his name from the board all by himself. Then Jake picked a colored pen to write on the easel with, by himself. No physical prompting. He showed quite a bit of independence today. Great Day!".

so today is a good day, and I cried. Isn't that crazy. That notebook is such a good book. Reading it makes me laugh or cry (or both) almost daily.
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