Friday, July 11, 2008

"School's out for the summer" ... NOT!

Sorry, Alice Cooper, but you're wrong about that. The school year may have wound to a close at the end of June, but for Jonathan, school is still going strong. For 3-1/2 weeks this month, Jonathan is attending the "Bridges" Summer School for Students With Developmental Disabilities. It is offered by the Catholic school board and is open to students in both the Catholic and public boards. It's held at Regiopolis-Notre Dame high school here in town, and runs from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Monday to Friday, from July 2-25.

We heard about this program from Jonathan's special needs worker at school and decided to enroll him. One stipulation is that each student who attends must be accompanied by a personal care worker who will help them with all the activities--sort of like an EA. So we asked our friend/neighbour Heather, who is a primary-school teacher who does mostly supply work, to be Jonathan's support worker.

She picks Jonathan up in her car every day and takes him to the program, and brings him home. They do lots of fun things together like go to the gym or walk on the track; they go on walks and special outings like bowling and to the park; they do crafts and puzzles and read books. Most of the other students in the program are teenagers, actually, but because their developmental levels are quite varied, Jonathan fits right in. He is apparently a very popular member of the group and is having a wonderful time.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Waterloo welcome

This weekend we also visited our friends the Hellingas in Waterloo: Lori, Bruce, Nathan, and Jonathan. It has been a long time since our two families got together, but with the Hellingas that never seems to matter; we feel comfortable right from the first moment. That's what being good friends is all about.

old London town

This past weekend we went to London, ON to visit Alan, Genevieve, and Sadie. Here are Allison and Jonathan enjoying time in the park with their cousin. Sadie seems to be having a great time too!

The wagon proved to be a great way to get around.

We visited the London Children's Museum, which has many different theme rooms such as outer space, the environment, and the Arctic. Here is Allison in the pioneer schoolhouse, doing a little light reading.

Jonathan, meanwhile, loved the recycling centre.

We also visited our friends the Smits in London. We hadn't seen them in a year and a half so it was great to catch up with them and see how much the kids have grown. Here are our kids with Hannah (8), Cody (5), and Olivia (11).