I keep checking on Baby M. to see how he progressing here at kindergarten. The first week was definitely the roughest. The second day of school was better than the first… until about 1:30 in the afternoon. At that point, he decided he’d had enough. He simply walked over to me and said, “I am going home!”
I said, “No one is here to get you. There is just a little bit of time left.” I tried to redirect him, but he would have none of that. He shook his head, stood his ground and would not budge. I decided to give him a little time to think about what activity he wanted to do next, so I walked over to a table with kids all hard at work.
In a flash, Baby M opened the classroom door and yelled, “I am walking home!” as he flew out the door. I ran out right after him… feeling like I was back at my old job, chasing kids down the hall. He almost made it to the exit when I caught him. He dropped to the ground and started kicking and crying loudly. This brought the Occupational Therapist and the Social Worker to my aid and we tried to talk Baby M into walking nicely back to class. He decided to kick and thrash about even more and was absolutely opposed to the idea of going back to his classroom. The three of us decided that we needed to move Baby M to a better place (not the busy entry way to the school) to deal with this young boy, so we picked him up and carried him to a near by empty classroom.
The principal walked past us as we were moving Baby M. I am sure it was quite a sight. She did have the good sense to just walk on by. Baby M was shocked. His arms and legs were held (mainly to stop the kicking and hitting) as we “flew” him down the hall. I had to make the comment that kindergarten children came in a much more convenient travel size then upper elementary school age kids.
Each day after that has gotten better. At this point, he has been moved for half of the day to a smaller classroom where he can work on specific skills development at his level and the routine is very structured. He was a little nervous the first day, but that is already improving. Baby M is not on my caseload at this point, so I won’t be keeping tabs on him, but he does have a little piece of my heart… and all my hope. Any day that I feel overwhelmed and just want to walk out the door at 1:30 in the afternoon will remind me of Baby Mohammed Ali. ☺
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