Saturday, February 5, 2011

Back to work...

Yesterday was my first day back at work after 4 years of unpaid family leave. Although I have been doing a few days of CRT work during my time away this was my first day back officially. For those that don't know, I am a special education teacher. I teach at a school for students with physical and multiple disabilities. The school I work at utilises principles of conductive education in their programs and focuses on active learning. We have a huge contingent of therapists, specialists teachers, aides, DSW's and a school nurse on site to work with the students too.

I am working one day a week on Fridays, sharing a primary class with another teacher. I think it's going to be a bit of a learning experience for me. I am used to having my own class and being able to do my own thing but this time I need to fit in with the program the class follows for the rest of the week. It's also going to take me a lot longer to get to know the kids only being there one day a week!

There are 6 students in the class, all with multiple disabilities. They all have quite high sensory needs as well. There is one student in the class that walks and the rest are in wheelchairs although require frequent position changes and transfers across the day. It's a very busy class and very different to the classes I have worked in beforehand. It's going to be a fun challenge for me this year, I think! I really need to keep focused when I'm with these students as there are a couple of students that like to reach and grab as well as one who is mobile that likes to get into everything and climb. I have a student who is anaphylatic to nuts which means I need to be careful in the classroom. I also have to be careful what I eat the day before too as I can't eat anything with nuts in it for 24 hours prior to having contact with the student.

As you can see, it's busy! Even from just one day with the students I can see their unique personalities coming out and I'm really looking forward to getting to know them all a little better (even if I do come home from work exhausted every Friday!!)


Cate said...

Hey there. I've just popped over to let you know I've nominated your lovely blog for an award! Stop by my blog for all the details :-)

bigwords is... said...

What an amazing job you have! Congrats on getting back to work and well done on the stylish blogger award!

Lovely to meet/follow your blog thanks to Keep Cate Busy. Pop over to bigwords if you get a chance x

Sue said...

I am a bit stunned by the anaphalaxis requirements! Technically the kid has to injest the food to cause a reaction to happen, I would have thought from what we have learnt with our anaphalactic child, I cannot understand how you having a peanut 24 hours prior and having washed your hands and cleaned your teeth could possibly give them a reaction.

Narelle said...

Sue, I can kind of understand why these parents choose to have these restrictions. I guess they are erring on the side of caution. When I did the anaphlaxis course on my first day back the instructor gave an eg of a woman's partner who ate a snickers bar at lunchtime, he ate other things during the day came home, kissed his partner and she died from an anaphalactic reaction! So I guess there are extreme cases. This boy has already had his epipen administered four times in his life (he's only 7!) I do think it's a little tough on staff to expect them to avoid nuts though, especially if they're working with this student all week.

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