Phone call hitting home…

When I am not chasing around the kiddies, working out, or writing a blog post, you can see me teaching English Language Arts and Social Studies in my local school district. This upcoming school year will be my fifth-year as a special education teacher.
Yesterday, I had to make a phone call in which many of my students’ parents made at one point.
I called to have my child evaluated for early intervention services…More specifically, speech.  #deepbreath
It wasn’t until my sister-in-law pointed out, that Andrew and I noticed.  
If you ask Sophia to say, “OK” her response is,
Just like “Kangaroo” is “Tangagroo”.
She can’t make the hard “K” sound.  
I mean, I noticed she said “otay” but I thought it was cute.  I didn’t think of the fact that maybe she actually can’t make the “K” sound.
I have to admit, I had a mini-freak attack when Andrew said, “We have to call and get her evaluated!”
-> Teacher in me: Yes, I totally agree we should so she can get the necessary services, if she qualifies.

-> Mommy in me: Nooo!!!  Why does she need something else to battle?  Why her?

Now, I know the “Mommy in me” is a bit dramatic (have you met me?), and OF COURSE this is something minimal compared to what it could be.. But NO ONE, ever wants their child to struggle or have something “wrong” with them.
A little fact about me- I struggled all throughout my schooling career.  I tell this to my students time and time again.  I was in speech and in all the remedial classes.  I never had a “study hall” or “academic prep”.  I had to work my butt off to be in the mid-80’s.
It wasn’t until I was in college where things started to come easier and I was more successful, academically. 
So maybe my little “freakout” brought me back to those experiences, but what I can say is that between Andrew, who is a first grade teacher, and I, we’ll make sure both Sophia and Brayden will receive whatever services they needs now and throughout their academic career.  
We will not only be their loving and supportive parents, who will teach them every trick in the book to solve a number bond problem or use a graphic organizer to help organize their writing, but we will be their advocates. #always
So now…  We wait for a call from the Early Intervention Department for someone to come do a speech screening on our little miss.  In the meantime, if you come to our house and hear the word “Kangaroo” about one million times, you know why…


  • Janelle Quinn

    My son did the exact same thing and I freaked out too when it was time for kindergarten and he still did it. The teachers had said he would grow out of it by then. He didn't. It was the back of the throat sounds. Hard C and K and the G sound. So gramma was dramma and Christmas was tristmas and kangaroo was also tangaroo. In fact his own name, Jack, was Jat. I took him to a private speech woman and she fixed it almost immediately. She also said that his vocabulary at 5 was that of an 11 year old but that he had trouble with word retrieval. I cried. We worked with her for a while. The articulation issue was fixed and I asked school to do an eval for a reading IEP. They hesitated but after the first part of first grade last year the teacher told me he was way behind in reading. I cried again. We worked with him and home and talked to him about how it was ok it was hard etc etc. I am happy to say that we must have gotten five separate notes sent home in addition to his report card, and pulled aside at the end of the year to tell us just HOW amazed and impressed and proud she was of Jack. He worked so hard and he shocked us all and he is reading at the correct level now and is right up there with his classmates. Every now and again he still says some things funny like "lemonade" is "lenomade" but he self corrects and then those "cute" mess ups do go away. He's 7 and going into second grade now and as a mother I know we will face new challenges, as well all do, with everything. My point is – I get it. And so many of us mommies do. You guys are doing a great thing for your daughter by jumping in quickly to help her. And be confident she will sort herself out quickly. These kids have an amazing ability to learn and correct and grow out of things. Best of luck and look forward to hearing of her progress!

  • Heather Nikola

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience!! I am thrilled to hear your lil man is had such success! Thank you so much for your kind words- I'll keep ya posted 🙂

  • Unknown

    Heather, my first daughter had to get evaluated for speech, and they sent someone to the house that the state pays for, and then she continued when shae began school until the 3rd grade- and now, you would never be able to tell. She speaks fine. She just needed to be shown how to use her tongue to say the letters correctly, and to practice some exercises that would strengthen the correct parts of the mouth that she needed to. She also had some fine motor skills to work on. Now, you would never know she ever struggled.
    Also, having to work at something and improve is a great way to begin teaching growth mindset. Have you ever read the book, "Nurture Shock," about the science of child rearing? Fascinating.
    Good luck!

  • Nancy~

    Deep breath mamma. Articulation is one of the "fastest fixes" and the area that effects academics the least….also make sure you have her hearing checked. Someone I know didn't realize her daughter had tempetary hearing loss due to something with her tubed and once that got fixed she was fine! You know how to reach me if you need anything and you know you can bring as many advocates/people to those meetings as you want!

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