There are many reasons why I work with children. There is a certain joy I get when I see hurdles overcome and the proverbial light bulb going off over the children's heads.
Last year a little boy joined my toddler classroom, about halfway through the year. He was only part time, and he even missed some of those days. While I had him, I worked hard to assimilate him into the classroom. Whilst being cognisant of his personal boundaries and maintaining an understanding that this was a new experience for him. It was obvious at the onset that his little boy had some special needs, this was backed up by a phone conversation with his pediatrician (who had requested a conversation with me). This little boy was autistic. Not severely, but definitely showing characteristics of autism. As a mother of an autistic son, and a Developmental Care Worker with over 30 years experience, I was aware that the diagnosis his pedieatrican was going to share with me, was what I had suspected. Although his family did not share this with me. Any way, my first goal for this little boy was to get him comfortable in his new surroundings, with the hopes that he would one day join us at circle time, and participate in the group activities set out for the day.
Today that goal was accomplished! We had been slowly getting him to sit during circle activities a little bit at a time, and the past few times he has sat the entire time. (Insert big grin) Today I was selecting each child to come up and select a colour to match and show the class. When I called up this little boy he did it! He came when I called his name - he took the colour to match - matched it - then went and sat back down!!!! Yippy! I was on cloud nine - I was so happy for him and he was happy with himself! I see many awesome days ahead for this little boy! He will accomplish a lot!
When I experience a 'Break through day', I continue to hold steadfast on the path I am taking, while teaching little minds.