Saturday, April 11, 2015

Back to Active Learning

In September, the TSBVI Outreach Division came out for their visit and consultation. With assistance from on of the consultants, I completed Jayden's assessment which indicated that he was around 6 to 7 months.

The book from Lilie Works to set up the FEILA curriculum (Active Learning) cost more than I was willing to spend. We had purchased the manual, FEILA Curriculum, at a much lower price. I asked my niece if she could take the manual and type up the activities I felt we might use in Jayden's daily schedule. I had her use activities that were in the developmental levels of 3 - 6 months, 6 - 9 months, and 9 - 12 months.

She used a larger print to make it easier for me to read and put each activity in a box with the colors indicating, Gross Skill (Blue), Fine Motor Skill (Yellow), Fine Motor and Gross Skill (Green)....  I purchased a foam poster board, printed out and trimmed the activity boxes and was ready to establish Jayden's daily activity schedule (called Learning Environments).



When TSBVI came out, we reviewed Jayden's skills assessment and the activities boxes and set his daily Active Learning Environments. This schedule should be designed to be flexible, because if Jayden does not show interest in a particular activity on a certain day or at a specified time, I should move on to another activity. Learning can not happen if Jayden is not interested in the activity.

I purchased plastic tubs to hold all of the toys and various items we will use for each activity. Then after separating everything into the tubs, I labeled them according to each activity.



Our little classroom is small and tight! We have a lot of equipment and even more toys/items for his daily routines. At some point, I hope to move all of the furniture out, pull the carpet up and build storage shelves so that I can easily pull the box I need.



Jayden thoroughly enjoys Active Learning. He is extremely interested in learning new things!  I have become his playmate and spend my days playing with him. As long as he is interested in the activity, he is motivated to learn. My new motto is "If you make learning fun, success will come."!

In this video, Jayden is playing with "Finger Toys". This activity encourages the learner to discover various ways of picking up and holding the items. Their fingers are used more, rather than a "fist hold", and the fingers are separated. They will used their fingers to explore the holes. In addition, Jayden used his tongue to explore the holes which is good for developing tongue control. But as you can see, Jayden is enjoying this activity.

 
Jayden then finds even more toys to pick up and hold. He is now holding two toys in one hand and really enjoying exploring them with his tongue.
 

 
 


This next activity is called "knocking down towers".  If Jayden enjoys knocking down the towers I build, eventually he will want to learn how to build them himself. This could take up to a year or longer, so it is extremely important that he enjoy this activity.  Although there is no picture, the video will appear when you push play.

 
 
Additionally, Jayden is learning to find things (in this case, the tower) using sound.
 

 
 
Jayden really enjoyed the activities we used to help him learn to take steps. We used the HOPSA in combination with the UPSEE shoes, which allowed me to literally "walk" him up and down the track in the ceiling.
 
 
The other activity we used was his tricycle, which he also thoroughly enjoyed.
 

As a result, he is now taking steps in his gait trainer. He is doing so well, we are now taking him down the street.