As if there wasn't enough going on in our lives right now with Matthew just recently coming home from 4 Winds, jacob had a full psychological evaluation and OT eval on Monday. Jacob will be 5 on November 1, and is eligible in NYS to go to Kindergarten. I cannot quite put my finger on why I don't think he should go, besides that fact that he would be a really young kindergartener, but I just don't feel like he is ready. In an effort to gather information and to just make sure he was on target developmentally, I asked our school district for a developmental assessment of Jacob.
He has had speech therapy for over 2 years now and is still not speaking clearly and has trouble conveying his thoughts. While I know he is very social and does well with friends, he has shown no interest in preacademic skills and struggles with basic shape drawing, and letter recognition. He has only very recently become interested in the letter J for Jacob, and still does not consistenly recognize it as the first letter of his name.
I thought for sure that the eval would not show anything, but I figured it would be a great way to just rule out any problems. Thankfully, Jacob scored an 89 cognitively, so he is on target in that aspect, but sadly he scored a 73 in fine motor skills. Essentially, 85-115 is a solid score, on most standardized tests with an average being 100, so cognitely Jacob was on the low average side, but as long as he can be described as any sort of average I am THRILLED.
However, his score of 73 in OT skills, puts him in the 3rd percentile of all children his age. This means that he performs better than only 3 percent of all children his age in fine motor skills. He does not yet have a dominant hand, he could not draw a person without a lot of prompting, and he could not cut out a line. He could not trace a line on a piece of paper, and had trouble making a cross with an example to look at.
However, he was one hell of a bead stringer- stringing a whole string full of beads, and he throws a ball like a champ! So, basically if he was in a bead stringing competition, watch out world, and as long as he only had to throw and not catch he is A-OK!
As part of the evaluation, the occupational therapist evaluated Jacob's Gross Motor skills as well- he cannot jump or hop, but he can ride a 2 wheeler! he has trouble alternating feet on the stairs, but can kick a ball.
Jacob is playing soccer with a group of other children who are all going to kindergarten. He is the only child who is having trouble separating from his mom, I know not completely unusual, but still a concern. he is struggling with dribbling the ball, again not a horrible thing, but he should be gaining skills at a similar pace to the rest of the team, and is not on par with them at this point. He is a very young little guy still. If he goes to kindergarten, many of his peers will have a full year on him age wise and therfore skillwise.
however, if he doesnt go to kindergarten, now there will be at least 2 if not 3 therapies that he will qualify for that we will need to fit into his schedule. Sure, the district is obligated to provide him with OT, PT and speech, but they are only obligated to provide these to him at the local elementary school. Is it really realistic for me to think that I, a single mom, can drive him to and from these services every week? Is there any chance that the district will take pity on me and just provide the services to him at Nursery School? is there any chance in the world that eh will have a major growth spurt and suddenly gain these skills at an alarming rate?
Once again more questions.....few answers.....and sadly child number 3 with a need for additional support.
- I am a single mom of three amazing boys! All three of my sons entered my family through adoption. All three of my boys have developmental disabilities. My oldest son, Matthew has been diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Bipolar Disorder. David, my middle son, has a genetic condition, he has a duplication on his 15th chromosome which leads to autism like symptoms, seizures and learning challenges. My youngest son, Jacob has learning disabilities. Each of my children bring unique challengs to our family and also bring their own personality and joys to our everyday life!