Friday, August 29, 2008

Hello Blogland!

Things are starting to smooth out over here in the Cole household... Swimming season is over... the public pool is closed... School is in full swing...

I mentioned in my last post (10 days ago!!!) that we were trying to work on some behavior issues with our daughter at school. Let me outline what the plan is - and check out the latest results! First the teacher has talked with Taylor Anne about the behavior she expects to see throughout the day, then she showed her a chart that lays out the day in 15 minute increments. At the side are the day increments, and at the top are the three behaviors we want T.A. to concentrate on doing... these are:
  • Self Control (not talking to others when she's not supposed to, or playing with class materials instead of working with them)

  • Staying in Assigned area (sometimes she wanders around the classroom)

  • On task (doing the work she's supposed to be doing, and not goofing off)

During the day, when a teacher notices T.A. not able to maintain the behaviors that are necessary, she will get a dot in that column for that time period... so she could potentially get 87 dots if she's messing everything up through the whole day. The day is rated like this: a "Green" day is one with 0-7 dots, "Yellow" day is 8-15 dots, and "Red" day is 16 dots or more. This means that she had a really hard time concentrating and staying on task that day. This chart comes home with Taylor Anne each day, and sometimes there is a note on the paper explaining if she had a particular problem, or if the day was great she gets a "WOW!". Now comes the parenting part - if she has a Green day, she gets to do something special that day, a yellow day is normal - nothing special, no privileges taken away, a Red day means she will have privileges taken away, and she gets a "talkin'-to" by Mom and Dad.

Since this program was started last Wednesday, we've been able to witness at least one of each color day. I'm proud to say that Taylor Anne has only had one 'Red' Day so far! This week we have seen great improvement, as Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were all 'Green' days. Thursday was a 'Yellow' day, and we have yet to see what today will bring - but I think it couldn't be too bad, since it's a half-day today. I'm excited to see some improvement and she seems really proud of herself when she has a good day at school. I'm hoping we won't have to continue this program for the whole year though, and I'm sure it takes a lot of time for the teacher. I know of at least 3 other students in Taylor Anne's classroom which are using the same system, so I'm glad also that it's not something she's singled-out for. Do you guys have opinions on this behavior plan? I would welcome any opinions or suggestions too!

The chicken saga is continuing, as the Board of Commissioners decided to have their staff draft a new ordinance. It sounded like they wanted to make it so hens would be treated similarly to other pet animals and wouldn't even require a permit at all. We'll see what comes out of their work session though next Tuesday (I'm planning to attend - just so I can see what the new ordinance states, and be prepared for the public hearing which should be on the 16th. If you ever want more information on the chicken stuff, check out my other blog It hasn't been updated since the 19th either, but I'm sure I'll put something new up there soon. Mike has been very busy drafting plans for my coop - I can't wait to get busy building it! I think we're going to go with a stationary barn-style coop in the backyard near our garden that will have a large attached run, we'll also make an ark or a chicken tractor so we can move them around the yard and into the garden areas safely.

I had also mentioned in an earlier post that I'm reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle... this has been quite an eye-opening book for me. I knew that locally grown food is healthier for you, and it makes more economical sense for the community and usually for the consumer, but I didn't really think about ALL of the implications of buying food 'out of season' and foods that are shipped cross-country or across the world from the grocery store! I'm really starting to re-think the way my family eats, and where we get our food from. I have a feeling that part of what we'll be doing over the next couple of months to a year is totally revamping our menu and eating habits. It's going to take a lot of commitment though from each member of our family to be able to do this... so it might take a while. I'm not sure Mike's going to like the idea - but I'm hoping he'll read the book once I'm done and we can have some serious discussions about changing our habits. We'll see... I'm only about 1/3 of the way through the book! So far I really love the recipes!

I still haven't been very crafty - I'm trying to do some knitting, and slowly, my working surfaces in my sewing/craft room are getting cleared of Girl Scout stuff (we had our parent meeting last night - and we'll start up with the girls next Thursday)... so hopefully soon you'll see more crafty things popping up here.

This weekend we're headed over to my Sister's house near Langly AFB to celebrate my Neice's FIRST birthday! I know we're all going to have a great time, and I hope to get a lot of pictures! I hope you all have a great weekend too!


Egghead said...

Now how can such a cute little girl be a behavior problem? She looks so sweet and innocent. Actually I kid. I know just how cute my youngest granddaughter is but in one seconds notice the red eyed devil springs forth from her eyes. I look at her and just can't believe that this cute little girl can be naughty.

Lynn said...

I think it's a positive way of dealing with it. There is a reward, but plus some consequences. I hope it won't have to last to long. Just think - you want to handle any problems now instead of letting it go - it would just get worse. The teacher sounds like a patient person. It's miserable humid here isn't it?
Have a good weekend!

tipper said...

I think the chart is a great way to help her over this rough spot. Sounds like she is already over the hump.

Sounds like your making movement on the chicken issue-Yea!!

Libby said...

I'm reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle right now as well. While I'm sure our family would not be able to make the complete change, there are ideas swirling in my head . . . and they are very happy ideas. I think I'll have to approach it in small increments - a one week trial, a two week trial and so on. Then maybe I can get Hubby on board.