Friday, October 26, 2007

Learning his colors

K.C.'s teacher sent a note home in his communication book, he is learning his colors! I wrote her back and asked her how he is learning them because I have been trying very hard each and everyday to teach him his colors. She said he is doing very well if the color is "signed" rather than only said. He is recognizing the signs for colors and some of the colors! We have learned that he will watch hands so much better than mouths or eyes. I have a very strong feeling that I am going to need to take a sign language class. I don't think I am going to be able to help K.C. if I only know the basics, I need to know more. This may be his way of communicating/learning so I am going to need to know all that I can. Tomorrow I am going to call around and see what classes I can find.


Niksmom said...

Go here and find the nearest local group. The one in my state does sign language classes.

Also, most community colleges have courses you can take.

Have you ever had an "AAC" (augmentative and adaptive communication) ealuation for KC? He may benefit from a communication device. Ask the school speech therapist about it or ask your doctor for a referral to someone. Most states have some sort of assistive technology initiative whether through a hospital or other organization. I know Easter Seals has this.

Helping KC find ways to communicate could open up a whole new world for both of you. :-)

KC's Blog said...

Hi there NiksMommy, thank you so much for the info. I appreciate it very much. He has been using an AAC device at school called a Macaw. I asked his teacher if she has been using it cause this one was custom fit for K.C. we had tried many different ones to see which would be a better fit for K.C. and it was the Macaw. I am hoping and praying we have a breakthrough soon with K.C. it is so difficult and very stressing for him to not be able to communicate. Leads to some headbanging but he's gotten alot better about coping and not headbanging. I am going to try the community colleges like you suggested, I am hoping they are more affordable. So far the ones I have called have been quite expensive. I should have thought of the community college. I am so grateful to all you guys in the blogosphere, you have helped K.C. so much :) We are all like a huge family :)

Mom without a manual said...

If he uses the Macaw at school what does he use at home to facilitate communiation? Does the Macaw travel with him? Do you have one of your own?

Sign language can seem daunting but if he can provide that communication this could be a wonderful thing!!!

Carol said...

We decided against doing formal sign language classes since they focus on American Sign Language (ASL) which is an actual language as opposed to the signed English that's typically used in schools.

Instead, we bought several copies of a good paperback sign language dictionary so we could look up signs whenever we need to. We keep one in the car, one at home and one at school. Highlighting the words we've used in the past makes it easy to find them again if I need reminders.

You should also check out Michigan State University's website at It's got video of a wide selection of vocabulary. They also sell software so you can access it without the internet. The program allows you to type whole sentences and then it signs and speaks them at the same time. My son LOVES it.

Casdok said...

My son also prefers to look at signs, but wont use them himself.

I have also found when out, if the public see me signing to him they are a bit more accomodating!!

Anonymous said...

The latest autistic boy I worked with preferred signing. His mother had a local teacher of the deaf teach her; so another idea for you to think of.

A Bishops wife said...

You will love learning sign language! There is a lot of other times it comes in handy too.

Donetta said...

Hay girl, I took ASL at phx college. they have a very strong deaf community. I also got a dvd set that I use on computer. It is a great laungagee of concepts rather than defined words. Both of my kids thrived on it and it sure comes in handy in a crowd.:)

Melissa H said...

How wonderful, Tina!!! I'm so excited for you! What a breakthrough!!!

Lora said...

I am soooooo sorry that I am so behind in reading your blog, such a huge slacker!!! I hope that K.C. is doing all better. Our little guys are so tough and endure so much pain without complaining even when we wish that they would so we could know what is up with them. Griffin stubbed his big toe and it has a bruise underneath his toenail but I have no idea what happened.

You are such a great mom Tina! You go to such lengths, all the way through the universe to help your boys and I am so very proud of you and your awesome parenting skills! Signing is not so bad if you pace yourself and don't let it overwhelm you. I used lots of signs with Griffin when he non-verbal, it helped a lot to have the signing books for reference. You can do it sweetie, because you have sheer determination and such great love and compassion for your kiddos. Lots of hugs and love from us to the three of you!!!!!

Eileen (aka Mamaroo) said...

Hi Tina,

Good news about K.C. learning to use sign. Hopefully with the ability to communicate more, he will be less frustrated.

About the Soda Bread recipe, Sorry that I have not had much time on the computer lately to respond. I have been looking for the recipe. My mom usually has to tell me it each time I bake it. I don't believe she has it written down. I can't get it from her now because she is in Ireland, but as soon as she gets back I will ask her. I am sure that it will be too late for Big Brother's school though. Sorry. I know I had it written down some place and I just can't find where.

kristina said...

I know there are books, videos, websites with signs----I will try to look them up! Charlie started to talk using sign.

Happy Halloween!

Melinda said...

YEAH FOR KC! Noah also learned some basic sign language when he was mostly non-verbal. We all did. It helped tremendously! We went to our local library and got some books and videotapes that taught it.

Casdok said...

Just thought i would let you know i am doing the post tomorrow of when my son was ill.
No need to post this comment.
Hope all is ok.

Ange said...

Signing worked wonders for us. Moose has motor planning issues with his hands just like he does with his mouth, so the signs were crude. It started to get difficult to distinguish between signs, but then he started to vocalize and we could tell by his vowels what the sign was supposed to be. In one year he went from saying 1 or 2 vowels to signing over 200 words to now saying many of those words (approximations). He has significant apraxia (verbal, oral motor), but everything just started to work (with a lot of intervention and therapy, a lot of experiencing life, a lot of adaptation, and a lot of finding communication strategies that he was successful at.)

He definately knows more signs then us. We were trying to get into a community college sign class, but he is all of a sudden verbal enough that sign doesn't seem to be his preferred method any longer. They are still teaching him sign at school (in his case, it is part of a sequence for how he learns to verbally say the word), and we learn those along with him.

You can also ask for sign language classes for you and family as part of your parent training related service on his IEP.

Good luck!!