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A Couple of Bear Updates

Posted Sep 12 2008 11:28am
Sometimes you lose, and sometimes you win.

On Wednesday the Bear had another PECS session. She was doing so well at home, demonstrating that she understood which card to use to request ‘milk’, or her soother, or the swing, and she was also showing signs that she was starting to understand other cards as well (for various videos and games we play with her).

So at the PECS session, I set up her binder with three cards on it (nose, spoon, and ‘milk’). She selected the milk card and handed it to me. I held it up to show her, said ‘milk’, and then handed her the cup with a couple of ounces of milk in it. While she drank the 'milk' I put the binder out again with the soother card. When she finished, she handed me the cup, looked over, grabbed the soother card, and handed it to me. I again showed her the card, said ‘soother’ and gave it to her. So far so good.

The therapist then said, what would happen if you gave her a choice of milk or soother, and then had her choose the right item after giving me the card? I was confident that she would get this right. We put both cards on the binder, and she pulled the milk card. I then showed her the card and identified it, and put both options in front of her. She scooped up the soother and walked away.

We repeated this three times, and each time she selected the milk card and then took the soother. Apparently ‘milk’ is the first card to choose in any situation, followed by soother, and then by something else.

We’ll keep working on this one. At least she can distinguish between the cards. Now we just have to link them to the correct object/action.


When the Bear goes to IBI we always pack her a snack. Today was sliced organic strawberries and kiwi. The goal is to get her to use a pincer grasp to pick up the fruit and eat it. If they put the food in her hand she will put it in her mouth, but getting her to pick it up herself is not easy, and a pincer grasp is harder still. Most of the time she will grab the tutor’s hand and guide it to the bowl to signal that she wants them to pick up the food for her and put it in her hand. We and they also put food on her spoon and try to get her (guided) to put it in her mouth. She has never attempted to do this by herself.

Today, totally unprompted, she reached over by herself and picked up the spoon, which had a piece of fruit on it, and put it in her mouth, as if she had been doing it for years. Her school is closed for vacation for the next two weeks. In the meantime, you can bet that she will have lots of access to a bowl of sliced fruit and a spoon.

Sometimes you get a win, and sometimes you don’t. I’ll put this week in the win column. Tonight we’re off to Canada’s Wonderland to celebrate.
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