Thursday, February 25, 2010

Evaluation Round 2

Luke's special needs pre-school evaluation went pretty well on Tuesday. The evaluation team included a special needs pre-school teacher, child psychologist, occupational therapist and speech therapist.

Luke was shy at first. Nate said that he wouldn't leave his lap and kept his head hidden. But those pre-school teachers, they are so smart. She pulled out paper and some markers and Luke was off and running (not literally). He practically fell on the floor when she pulled out scissors - and he wowed them with his advanced paper cutting abilities.

The therapists went through their barrage of standardized type tests (mostly for occupational therapy). During those tests, the child is presented with an object, and the evaluator wants to see what they do with the object - as a means to determine development level. No matter the standardized test (there are several that can be used), one of the points of evaluation always includes blocks. Standard square painted wooden blocks.

Luke hates blocks.

He likes Legos, he likes Matchbox cars, he likes Playdoh. He has always refused to play with blocks. We have no clue why.

At the evaluation, when presented with the blocks, he pushed them away and told the evaluation team that he was "all done." They tried to make the blocks fun by stacking them into a tower. He proceeded to knock down their tower and repeated that he was "all done." The evaluation team thought this was very funny. He played with everything and anything else in the room. But the blocks had to stay at least 2 feet away from Luke at all times.

According to the evaluating occupational therapist, Luke did very well in his evaluation and she wouldn't recommend him for ongoing occupational therapy... but she was unable to assign him with a developmental age because he wouldn't play with the blocks. She simply couldn't grade the test without the block play.

I know that in certain realms, standardized tests are good. In some cases, I'd even agree that they are necessary. But in this case, I think that standardized tests are crap... and totally unadaptable. I don't think this really has any effect on the outcome of Luke's evaluation, thank goodness!

Luke tried to escape the room after about an hour of evaluation. Nate said he was completely done. But he did very well and showed them the real Luke. So now we have to wait until March 9 for our final placement meeting. At this meeting, we'll find out if the boys need to go to a special needs pre-school, and if they do, what school options we have.

Its been a long process! All of us are happy that its almost over. Especially poor Nate, who is handling all of these things on his own while I lay down all day and watch 15 year old re-runs of Beverly Hills 90210!

1 comment:

Christie said...

What is with toddlers and scissors? Connor is always begging to "cut" (which sounds so disturbing at first!) and it will entertain him for at least 20 minutes. As long as he doesn't cut off a finger or his sister's hair we are all good.

Too bad the evaluator couldn't write down that Luke is just beyond wooden blocks because he too preoccupied with planning his escape route and cutting paper.