Thursday, September 24, 2009

Ellie's 1st day of School

Ellie had her first day of school on Monday! Don't worry, she's a straight-A student so far. :) Actually, all she had to do was play. Her teacher, Kelly, will take the first couple of sessions to just get to know us. Her sessions will be for 2 hours every Monday morning. Kelly took a turkey caller along with her and we discovered that Ellie can hear that! We got her busy playing with something and then would do the turkey caller and she (usually) would look around to see where the noise was coming from. Yay!

On Wednesday, we went to HearUSA for a check-up visit. They turned her hearing aids up a little bit more, but didn't do any kind of hearing assessment so we are not exactly sure how much she can hear yet. We keep trying to test out her hearing by talking loudly behind her, but we haven't seen any huge reactions yet. When we think we do see a reaction, it's usually because of something that she caught out of the corner of her eye.

The picture above is of Ellie wearing one of the Hanna Andersson hats we use to cover her hearing aids. They are supposed to keep her from pulling off her hearing aids, although she has perfected the art of taking her hat off and ripping out her hearing aids--all while I'm driving in the car!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Shawnee Park

So we decided to go with Shawnee Park! We are very excited to get started working with them. :) I have an appointment to meet with some people from Shawnee Park and Ken-o-Sha on Friday morning to make an "Individual Family Service Plan" (IFSP). We will establish where we are at right now, and then set some goals for what we want to happen.

Ellie continues to be very vocal with her hearing aids. :) We will go back to Hear USA (hearing aids place) next Wednesday--hopefully they will turn the hearing aids up so that she can hear other things!

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Last week we toured 2 different schools for Ellie to go to. The first school we went to was Shawnee Park. At Shawnee Park, they focus on developing listening skills without using sign language or lip-reading. We were able to meet some of Ellie's potential teachers, and we really liked everybody that we met! It was fun to be able to see the 2-year old, 3-year old, and kindergarten classrooms. :)

The second school we went to was West Oakview, which is a total communication school. They incorporate sign language and lip-reading as well as working on speech/listening skills. We really loved all of the teachers/supervisors that we met.

Regardless of which school we choose, someone will start coming to our house once a week to work with Ellie and me. Then, when she turns 2, she will go to school for 3 or 5 half-days. (I can't imagine sending her away 5 days a week!) By the time she reaches kindergarten, she will hopefully be ready to be mainstreamed into whatever school we want to send her to.

Before we went on the tours, we were pretty sure we wanted her to go to Shawnee Park. But after visiting West Oakview, we found that we really liked that school too. We've been talking about pros and cons of each school all weekend...we're starting to lean toward Shawnee Park again, but we are not 100% sure yet, so I will keep you posted!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Ellie's 1st week with hearing aids

For the most part, Ellie is not too bothered by her hearing aids. She sometimes likes to tug at them, but I just divert her attention to something else and she forgets about them again. In my last post, I mentioned that I thought she was responding to some loud noises. But since that first day, we haven't really seen many reactions....we've tried banging pots and pans, yelling her name, and making all kinds of loud noises. She just doesn't seem to react--it could be that she hears it very softly and doesn't really care since she isn't used to hearing anyways...I don't know??

On the other hand, we think she can hear her own voice. With her hearing aids in, she jabbers like crazy!!! And she jabbers loud!! We can hardly carry on a conversation. :) It's actually pretty funny!

We have a couple of appointments set up next week to tour potential schools for her--Shawnee Park and West Oakview. Shawnee Park has an Oral/Deaf program that does not incorporate sign language. West Oakview does incorporate sign language. We will be touring each school next week and as soon as we make our decision, we will start having someone come to our house about once a week to work with Ellie.