Tink has now been at school for the best part of four weeks. Four weeks! It’s going really well, as far as we know, anyway.
She runs out to the transport minibus each morning, shouting a cheery, “Hi!” to the driver and guide, a huge smile on her face. She doesn’t seem bothered by the travelling at all, which is a relief. It’s such a long day for her, which does concern me somewhat; she’s the first to be picked up at 7.30 am and the last off at around 4.45 pm, but, unless I take her on the 28-mile round trip myself (twice a day) then there’s no other option at present.
Her home-school diary is the only way for us to know what kind of day she’s had. She won’t tell us anything and any sort of gentle questioning is met with a resounding, “NO!” So far, it’s all been pretty positive, with comments from her teacher about her eating all of her dinner or having a ‘great day’.
The school rewards effort with a ‘Superstar Learner’ award, given to one pupil from each class each week. This week was Tink’s turn! She did (according to her certificate) excellent science, going around the school with the teacher to find things made of wood! She gets to sit and eat her lunch at a special table with the other Superstars, I think!
We spent a little time at the school this week, as they held a charity coffee afternoon. The children had clearly been working very hard making things to sell – I bought a fab bird feeder made from a cardboard tube covered in seeds, with sticks pushed through as perches. Tink’s class made butterfly sweet bags, so I had to get a couple of those as well! The older children had also spent some time out in the community learning more about charity by visiting charity shops in the town.
On the way out, we stopped at the sweet stall again, and some of the children said, “Bye, Tink!”. That was lovely to see. It’s nice to be able to spend some time in the school and see just how happy and engaged the children seem, and how hard the teaching and support staff work to encourage this, as well as teaching them academic and life skills. They truly are amazing.
So, almost a month in and it’s all good! We’re happy, the teachers seem happy and, most importantly, Tink seems happy! I know it’s still early days, but it feels such a relief to think we made the right decision in sending her to this school.
Kelly is a mother of two – her son H and daughter Tink. H is home educated, Tink is autistic. Kelly is a self-employed Virtual Assistant… Life is busy!