Search Results For -My Smart Hands

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All Signs Point To My Smart Hands
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Adaptive Resources
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Signing With Your Child With Special Needs
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When A Stranger Has No Social Filter…
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Why We Got A Cat When I’m Not A Cat Person
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Lisa Leftover
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Kids and Poison Control Safety

All Signs Point To My Smart Hands

Since my first year of teaching, long before I had children of my own, I ran the Sign Language club at the school where I taught. I trotted out my choir of shiny faced six year olds onto the stage where they signed “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and “What a Wonderful World” to music. There wasn’t a dry parent eye in the house. I obviously considered signing to be more of a novelty act, than a life altering skill. I had NO idea how important the role ASL would ultimately play in my life. When I taught my son sign language nearly eight years ago, I relied on library books and bland, one dimensional websites.  Once Avery came along, and it became apparent sign language would be an essential tool in her development, I searched for innovative new ways to teach her. When Laura Berg posted a video on YouTube of her baby signing, it went viral. People were astounded by her 18 month old’s level of skill. They wanted to know how she did it and how they could teach their children to do the same and…My Smart Hands was born. I love Laura’s fresh approach to teaching ASL.[…]

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Adaptive Resources

  Sports & Rec Programs For Kids With Disabilities — Ontario DANCE Artistic Dance Scene Adaptive dance class—elements from jazz, ballet, acro. Fun, safe, happy environment where kids with disabilities can dance! www.artisticdancescene.ca 905-845-7272 Dance Ability Milton, Mississauga, Alliston, Ancaster, Bradford, Richmond Hill danceabilitymovement.com Marie Ann Longlade School of Dance Mississauga Creative movement dance class designed for kids with special needs. Taught by fully certified early childhood educator. www.marieannlongladeschoolofdance.com 905-276-7471 The Dance PAC Mississauga Love to Dance program for children 6 and up with cognitive and/or physical exceptionalities. www.thedancepacinc.com 905-542-2307 GYMNASTICS: Schlegel’s Gymnastics Centre Oakville Focused on fun, fitness adn the fundamentals of gymnastics in a non-competitive environment. www.schlegelsgym.com 905-842-3537 Burlington BGs Gymnastics Instructor led gymnastics and trampoline classes for children with a developmental disability. www.burlingtonbgsgymnastics.com  905-634-0310 Kid’s Super Gym Mississauga A structured gymnastics program designed to introduce, establish and build fundamental gymnastics skills including strength conditioning, co-ordination, balance, flexibility and agility. www.kids-supergym.com 905-607-5437 AQUATICS: Goldfish Swim School —Not adaptive specifically but the facilities and program are well suited for children with a variety of disabilities. goldfishswimschool.com City of Mississauga — Children with special needs swim lessons. Participants must be accompanied by caregiver over the age of 14. www.activemississauga.ca 905-615-4100 City[…]

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Signing With Your Child With Special Needs

Sign language–I can’t sing or sign its praises enough. Signing with my speech delayed child from the time she was an infant, helped us communicate and has played a tremendous role in her development. For those who doubt the validity of signing with your baby, the science backs it up. But I don’t need scientific evidence, the proof is sitting right beside me.  Our daughter is still significantly delayed in expressive language, but she’s able to put together simple 4-5 word sentences. To be frank, the girl never stops talking. Like, never. It’s a steady stream of questions, comments and a running commentary of observations over here. Music to my ears.    Do we still sign? Absolutely. You’d be surprised at how handy (pun intended) signing can be.   Last summer when the kids were out on the lake tubing, Avery signed “Stop!” to me in the boat. Then she made the sign for “cold.”    It was too loud to hear her words over the boat motor, even if she’d shouted. Two simple signs and her message was clear.    Potty sings are also a subtle way for her to tell me from across the park that she needs to[…]

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When A Stranger Has No Social Filter…

When it comes to social graces, some people completely missed the boat. Were they born without a filter or did something happen to make them that way? I have no answers here, but I do have a story.  A few months ago I was at the grocery store with my daughter and the cashier criticized my parenting. No qualms, no mercy, she flat out tried and convicted me without knowing a thing about me or my daughter. You can read about how enjoyable that was HERE.  Turns out, this was the same cashier who a few years earlier (she’s a lifer at our local grocery store… lucky, lucky us) berated my friend in front of a long line of customers. She made a snap judgement about her parenting (she is a wonderful, loving parent by the way), and called her out for being what she deemed “a negligent parent.”  Seriously lady?! a) Who do you think you are? b) You had no idea what this mother was dealing with that day. c) Ever heard of customer service? d) If you don’t have any nice to say, zip it. e) Your conveyer belt is always sticky.  Yesterday my sister in law and[…]

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Why We Got A Cat When I’m Not A Cat Person

^What people said when I told them we were getting a cat ^ A) We have reasons. B) Correct, I’m a dog person. Cats are pretty weird. C) You can never have too many pets, can you? Wait. Cat horders. I suppose you can. D) I am a little allergic—hives, scratchy throat, red eyes swollen eyes, sneezy allergic. So WHY get a cat??!! Because. Her.   Our girl likes loves animals. Dogs, cats, anything with fur. Or without fur even. RIP Ernie. We miss you tremendously.     When she grows up I imagine she’ll choose a vocation involving animals. Perhaps she’ll work as a vet tech? Or at a vet clinic or animal shelter in some capacity—greeting clients, feeding and grooming the animals. How perfect would that be? When she’s a bit older, I plan to help her set up and run a pet sitting or dog walking business. The way I see it, Avery’s passion is clear. So if we can do anything to help her gain the experience to guide her along that path, shouldn’t we?     So this leads us to our cat… KEVIN. My friend was telling us about her cousin’s cat, the original Kevin.[…]

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Lisa Leftover

Do you ever feel like you’ve taken on too much? With work, or life in general? Of course you do. It’s that universal and elusive quest for work-life-balance. Some days I have it all worked out. My house is clean (relatively, as long as you don’t look closely), there’s food in the fridge and meals planned for the week and I am caught up with work assignments. Some days. Other days, I’m spinning around in circles, wondering how I got myself into this predicament.  My house looks like hell, I’m wearing the same outfit for the third consecutive day, the kids are subsisting on Goldfish crackers and grapes, I haven’t talked to family or certain friends for ages (and they’re highly unimpressed) and I’m burning the midnight oil to meet deadlines. As I cradle my head in my hands I think, “Is this it?” Sure, I’m getting by — there’s a roof over our heads, I’m working from home (because wasn’t that the plan?) and I’m taking care of my family. But to what end? At the end of the day, there’s not much left for me. I’m tired and distracted and may not have left the house (outside of[…]

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Kids and Poison Control Safety

In my youth, I would crank a wicked tune by metal band “Poison” and lose control. These days, my Bret Michaels poster* has been replaced by a fridge magnet with the phone number for Poison Control. Until yesterday, my calls have been for relatively minor inquiries like, “What should you do if your child should eat a handful of Hershey’s Kisses…with the foil on?“   Last night my daughter awoke with a fever. I immediately gave her a dose of children’s liquid acetaminophen. I put the bottle back in the latched chest on the top shelf in our locked hall closet. This is where we keep all medications—well out of reach. I left a bottle of ibuprofen on the bathroom counter ready for the morning. We alternate between Tylenol and Advil so we can safely overlap doses. I figured if I left the bottle out, there would be no hazy sleep-deprived confusion about which type to give her next. Smart right? Not really.   In the morning as usual, Avery got up and went to the bathroom. I was two minutes behind her. When I caught up with her, she was standing on her step stool, holding the OPEN medicine bottle, smacking her[…]

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