Report cards, self-advocacy and support

It's hard to believe that it is already July. We are well and truly steam rolling through this year and before we know it, Christmas will come-a-knocking.

I remember Paisley’s first day at school like it was yesterday. Yet in reality, she has been on her Big School Adventure for the last six month. And, what a busy six months it has been.

As much as Paisley has absolutely loved starting school it hasn't been all smooth sailing.

Having a child with an eye condition who is trying to integrate into mainstream education has its challenges. Although we knew that this would be inevitable, the school, and we as parents were prepared.

Working with the school and Vision Australia we were able to place reflective visual aids throughout the school grounds in order to help Paisley self navigate and differentiate her new surroundings. Due to her poor depth perception it's much easier for Paisley to trip and fall over objects that are not directly within her peripheral vision.

My husband is a strong believer in self-advocacy and has always taught Paisley that if something is wrong or irritating her eyes she needs to speak up. So she did. Paisley told her teacher that the glare in the classroom was giving her headaches and exacerbating her nystagmus. Her teacher promptly moved Paisley to an area of the class with the least amount of glare until blackout blinds were installed.

The school was more than happy to cater to these aesthetic changes in order to help Paisley. With these small but efficient modifications, Paisley has become more attentive and engaged in her work and it showed in her report card.  

That's right guys! My little girl received her first 'big girl' report card and I was so proud of all her accomplishments. I strongly believe that Paisley’s school experience and achievements have improved due to the ongoing support she receives from her teachers and Vision Australia.

I can't stress enough the importance of building up your child's confidence enough to the point where they are able to independently advocate for themselves as we won't always be around to advocate for their best interests.

In other news, Paisley attended her first school disco before the school holidays. I don't remember discos being so interactive and fun, well not when I was at school anyway. I guess I'm just showing my age now.  That afternoon whilst getting ready she decided she wanted to dress up as a genie. Who was I to stop her?

In the picture are Sienna and Paisley dressed up for the school disco.

Sienna and Paisley are dressed up for the disco