Friday, February 4, 2011

Preschool Letter

I have decided I will write a letter to the preschool parents to introduce them to Ashlea. Here is what I've got so far.

Dear Preschool Parents,

We are writing this note to all of you to introduce you to Ashlea.

You may have seen her at preschool already.


Ashlea was extremely small and sick when she was born (only 570 tiny grams!) and as a result she has cerebral palsy. This means she needs to use equipment to help her at preschool, so you may see her in her wheelchair, or using a walking frame, standing frame or a special chair. She also wears splints on her legs and glasses. All these things help her to participate fully at preschool.


Ashlea has a visual impairment and can only see things up close to her. You may notice that her left eye looks a little unusual – that is because she is unable to see anything out of it. She can see out of her right eye, but not as well as you or I, so when talking to her or showing her things please stand close by.


Ashlea is a very friendly child and would love it if you came over and said hello to her. She can often be found hanging out with Mrs Cook, or with her twin sister Audrey. Ashlea LOVES attending preschool. Some of her favourite activities are climbing the ladder to the cubbyhouse, crawling through the tunnel and doing paintings.


One other thing you should know about Ashlea is that she is waiting to get a kidney transplant. This means she is more susceptible to illness than other children, so we would really appreciate it if you didn’t send your children to preschool when they are sick. A minor illness for your child can mean a week in hospital for Ashlea :(


Please feel free to come over and say hi to Ashlea and her sister Audrey. 


Unfortunately you probably won’t see us (the parents) at preschool much as we both work, but if you do see us we are more than happy to answer any questions you or your children have about Ahslea.

Murray & Alison
(Ashlea & Audrey’s parents)


I have of course included some very cute photos of her in the letter too!!

What do you think?  Can you think of anything else that might be important?

8 comments:

Molly said...

Love it ! Except I would change that part about sending sick kids to school. Parents will get offended because they will feel that you're telling them what to do indirectly. I would say: This means she is more susceptible to illness than others, especially if she's around a sick child that still was sent to school. Minor illness for healthy child can mean a week in hospital for Ashlea :(

You're still telling them but not directly indirectly (hope that makes sense!_

Sarah said...

I think it's great!

wheelchairs said...

Superb blog post, I have book marked this internet site so ideally I’ll see much more on this subject in the foreseeable future!

Love Ella said...

Oh gosh this sentence breaks my heart: "She can often be found hanging out with Mrs Cook, or with her twin sister Audrey" I know exactly what you are saying Alison, I feel your pain like it was my own. The polite little ways we try and come to terms with such great pains.

Missy said...

I would probably agree with Molly's comment...This means she is more susceptible to illness than others, especially if she's around a sick children. Minor illness for healthy child can mean a week in hospital for Ashlea :(

Its great and to the point.

I wish my MM was in Ashlea's class! I know she would LOVE Ashlea.

Territory Mom said...

Beautiful, she will make lots of friends. Please send us some warm weather.

Sarah said...

I have a kiddo in my current K classroom that has many adaptive tools to help him participate in the classroom including a computer to help him talk. The students are equipment helpers (fetchers for the aide that is w/ him) I try to include the students in everything that they want to know or ask about the student.

The first weeks of school, I would have the aide leave the room so that the students could freely ask questions w/o him being there (even tho, I know the student would not have minded) students asked questions, they are learning and now they are completely accepting of him and all his "needs"

He stretches before being in his stander and often fusses. I stop and remind students "is the aide hurting him" no --he just doesnt want to do the stretching. Yep. My student can no verbally talk --so often will cry or wimper --I always stop and remind students that he is talking --or fussing just like we do --just in his own way.

I hope that your sweat pea is getting the same love & support. I know that it has helped my student lots to be a part of his "care" in an appropriate way (hauling, fetching, putting away equipment)

I also know what you are trying to do w/ the transplant statement and think that just by stating that she is expected to get one would tell me as a parent --keep germs "out" However, it is a fine line --school tends to be a germy place by default.

I think its GREAT that you are working so hard to education families & kiddos. Maybe ask the teacher if you could come and do a Q & A w/ students --

You are a great parent advocating for your kiddos!

Sarah
shetrick@gmail.com

n0thingbuteverything said...

Sounds great Alison! I think you've covered everything. I will email you a copy of the letter I am sending out to prep parents at S's school if you want to hear what I said.
My only suggestion would be to reconsider the phrase 'You may notice that her left eye looks a little unusual'. I don't think you need to add that at all. I think that it's enough to just say that she can't see out of that eye, without labelling it as 'unusual', if you know what I mean?
I hope Ashlea has a super year.
Di
xo