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November 1994


This daily correspondence between schools she attended and us gives you a glimpse of our daily life. Most parents of typical children do not communicate on daily basis with the teachers. This gives a reader an insight to how important daily communication is for a child with autism.

Kat has attended school since she was 3 years old. These are school notes that were result of correspondence with her parents and her teachers. We have made comments at a later date reflecting back on the impact of these events. Kats School Notes Index







I will see you this morning .


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11/2 Hi,

I am working on the calendar I will send it in when we are ready . I wrote the grading info out in the white note book . The most important aspect is that if you have not tried a work sheet in "one on one " separate classroom you probably should wait until you can do that before bringing it and trying it in MrsBr.'s class. The newest ones may get a higher frustration level and therefore she may be more disruptive.


11/2 Kat picked up a catalog from the office this morning & sat looking at it quietly from 9 : 05 - 9 : 25 w/ out a peep! I tried something new - I gave her the A pages here , before we left . It went very smoothly . These pages are marked with the red A .

* By the way - hold up on ordering the slantboard - I want to see if we can get her one .

The C papers we did , now became B's . She had no problem at all w/ them .(except 1 - see my note )

We started on the D pages w/out incident . She needed refocusing on 2 pages.The dot to dot was easy for her . I made the D pages C's because she was able to do them w/ a minimum of help from me .

The ABC matching gave her a start -She needed mydirection at the beginning . (no frustration on these pages at all !)A super super day!- she remembered the date & there weren't any outbursts ! What did she have for breakfast ! ! ?


M 11/2 There is a definite reduction of " silly talk " during her sessions with me . When I have caught her , she continues to selrf - prompt (as soon as I get up) by saying adamantly " No MORE SILLY TALK !" I like what you did above, St. She seems to have much more self-awareness of inappropriate talking or singing .

Today , Kat really surprised me by saying " Let's go to the castle. " She clearly wanted me to play for awhile as she picked up doll, took my hand and pulled me to the castle whenIasked if she wanted to play. This was a nice break - and a very appropriate asking for social time .

Drills - Date is very consistent throughout session. Time is going really well and she can generalize on other clocks at least to the hour . Spelling is also great !*

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11/3 Hi,

Sounds wonderful . I'll leave to hold of on the calendar until she can write all the #'s .


Remember again - I won't be here next week . See you in a week .


Hi Danuta,

My name is T.H. E. introduced us last week . (She was able to give today's date correctly .) E. is absent today so I am working with Kat . It is now 9:45 and we are having a superday . She is now working on 39A - C and has needed NO assistance at all so far today . She has stayed focused and has worked without fussing . There has been occasional quiet singing while doing seatwork. (<-------- She self-corrected 2 times) Is that acceptable? Also twice when I handed her a new page she said " NO "but immediately began working without fuss. (We did not have time for D pages) I'm looking forward to seeing you on Monday.



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11/7 Hi T., I will see you around 9 AM

11/7 A ; Mrs. Br. classroom 6 (10 min )

C's Independently 7 (10 min )

D's " 4 ( 5 )

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A ( 10pages) Mrs. Br.'s classroom ( 15 mins .)

B ( 9 pages) INDEP. ( 20 mins )


D ( 8 pages ) INDEP. ( 9 mins)

Hi Danuta, 11/8/94

I would like very much to come and observe on Saturday at your convenience . I am available any time . What is best for you ? Write me or call 333 - 4444 .

We are having another nice day - 20 min in classroom w/ appropriate behavior - she was able to say the day and date - and complete 10 pages independently .

We then moved to one - on - one setting - had some difficulty counting . She then asked to use the bathroom where I wasn't as in control as I should have been but we did OK . ( Kat wanted to play with water in toilet and sick ) . Upon returning to one - on - one setting she completed 8 C & D pages easily w/ only 1 wrong.

Have a great day !


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11/9 sorry I forgot to tell you that you can't let her close the stall door or she takes advantage of us . andplaysaway. Saturday Kat works from 8:30 - 12:30 and 1:30 -5:30 Just give me a call sometime that morning to let me know when you are coming (555 - 5555)

11/9 Hi Danuta,

I will see you Saturday at 8:30. If I cannot make it ,I will call . Otherwise, I'll be there . Thanks so much .

A: 11 pages, 20 mins, Indep., 2 corrections

B: 3 " ", 5 mins., " ", 1 self-correct

C ---> D: 12 {6+5, pretzel break, 15 mins, " ", 3 " ", tired

We stayed in Mrs. Br.'s room for 30mins today - appropriate behavior - she could say the date and seemed to attempt to sing Nat . Anthem.

During a break Kat selected a world atlas to read . I sat next to her and she took my finger and pointed to the words . I started reading the names of places as she moved my finger . She then started at the beginning and read many of the names . Netherlands , Israel , Malaysia , Spain , India - etc . WOW ! i

Enjoy the long weekend ! See you Sat .

We had a great day .


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11/14 Hi Danuta ! I know everything went smoothly w/ Kat while I was away. We stayed in the classroom until 9 : 30 ; watched a short movie re :their reading unit , listened to some class discussion & generally had a good morning . We left to do work & she had a difficult time settling down . She wasn't " bad ", it was she was acting silly - funny - if you know what Imean . We started the B pages @ 9:35 & finished them at 10:05. On some of these papers ,she needed to be refocused on the task - which I noted w/ " needed help ". It doesn't mean she couldn't do the work, only that she stopped mid-stream because she became distracted ; singing , waving arms or pencil in the air , silly talk , etc . We took a 5 min break & then began the C pages . Page 69 A & B was difficult for her . she was bouncing in her chair , saying the wrong time . Parts C &D although were no problem ! When we teach the 1/2 hr, we sometimes draw a line where the little hand ends & tell the student that the clock hand did not go past that number.

ex - 12:30 looks like 1:30 but you draw a line at the mid point . See my notes . We then went back to the class &did some but not all of the Apages . We ran out of time -did 2 - no problem atall ! !


Hi E.,

Hi E.,

Hope you had a nice vacation . It seems Kat had no problem switching although she did test a little .

The " silly acting " has to be treated as any other disruptive beahvior. The sooner you catch the smaller disruptions the quicker she will stop. T. started keeping track for us of the # of pages, the type and time, and where they were done. This helps us to know how many worksheets to give you for each day. If you could do that it would be very helpfull. She stayed 1/2 hr in Mrs. Br.'s class ! thats great.

Would you like me to come over this week ? Which day ?


PS. I am sending to school the notebook of Kat's she has been writing on her own. She copies from catalogs & backs of books . She started doing this October 19th on her own.

PS I am also sending photos We are using to teach Kat everyone's name . Can you check if anyone is missing and maybe you can get their photo. If not I can bring instant camera so we could take some . We could add other people that she sees at school . (Ex librarian)

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11/15 Hi ! We started working right away at 9:15 w/ the A pages . I did it this way because they have TPE & Mrs. Ro. wanted her to go to the library also . She was a bit rambunctious w/ waving her pencil , jumping in her seat & mumbling . After the 2nd paper , she whimpered for about 5 sec but then continued . She also counted out loud . After 2 papers - we stopped & did exercises. she smiled the whole time ! When I asked to see her mouth - she opened it for me! Is this something new ? She had no problem w/ any of these A papers - she was just very fidgity . It was difficult to go out & do our exercises because we had parent visitation today ! When we got to our private room there was no problem w/ discipline.

* 7 - A pages , 9 : 15 - 9 : 30 w/ many interruptions due to behavior .

* How do you want me to use the calendar ? *(w/ the stickers?) I'll send home a December one shortly . I ask her the date every day.

Her behavior was a little better once we were in our own room . Started B pages @ 9 : 40 , copying calendar , Cpages - some are now B's - I noted them , got to some of the C's - stopped @ 10 : 05 . Went to the library .

When I place the stack of papers to be completed in front of her - she flips through them to see what type & how many . This is when she becomes unsettled. Any suggestions ? By the way , any day would be fine .

- pg 61 - she hada problem w. 40 , 50 , 60 she writes them as , 03 , 04 , 05 , 06 .

- I like the fill in the blank calendar . She did it with no difficulty . It is now 10:05 & we have had to stop yet again because of silly talk & silly behaviors . We didn't accomplish much today . Let me know if she is " off " at home also today , OK ?

Thanks, E.

* she knew everyone in packet #1 - I was thrilled ! ! We practiced # 2 also .

* She has a library book at home - " The Black Hole " Walt Disney . We'll hold her new book until this one comes back . She goes to the library every Monday .

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11/16 Hi E.,

Were you able to identify whose pictures we are missing from our stacks

Do you have photos of those?

I have sent enough A and try as A sheets that you would enough for two 10 minute sessions in Mrs. Br.'s class . Are you ready to do for 2 sessions?

*Respond to smallest incidents

The silly talk will increase if Kat knows she can get away with it. let me know what type of different consequences have you used & their effectiveness .I will stop in tomorrow to see if we could get some new strategies together .


11/16 Hi Danuta ! We went to the library this AM to p/u her book & then returned to class & started work @ 9:15. She started silly talk in the middle of the 1st page & we went out of the room & I stood her against the wall for a few seconds. We came back in & she worked on page2 quietly . She lost her concentration again midway there page3 - pencil waving ,head bobbing , & I held her hand w/the pencil & she quieted down again . She completed page4 w/out any disruption . After she completes each page , she leafs through the remainder of the pile to see how much she has left to do! She completed the remainder of the pages w/ out any outbursts or incidents . I praised her after each completed page & her reward was to "take a walk " to the other room ! We finished @ 9 : 40 . (9 : 15 - 9 : 40 1st set of A pages . Lasted 25 ! ! mins . ) She was working quietly for 15 mins straight w/out interruption. WOW ! Look for a surprise in bag #2 ! (photos ) We started on the calendar . She told me the date &I pointed to Wed . , Nov . 16 . Then I showed her the paper & gave her instructions . She started writing & I watched . I realized she wrote NOVEMBER on the wrong line so I had her re-write it again & she did so w/out complaining . This task took us about 5 mins . I let her read for a few minutes & then we went back to Mrs. Br.'s class to do our 2nd set of worksheets . We began @ 10:05 w/out incident ; a little " whimpering "& flipping through the pages . We kept on going . I decided to break this group in sections - & give it to her a small group at a time ,rather than a big lump . She did fine . (I kept slipping more pages in when she had only 2 left . We stopped @ 10 : 25 w/ 8 completed pages & 3 left . A much better day! Hopeit continues ! See you tomorrow !


Hi E.,

The pictures are great thank you I will see you later I will try and get there by 9:30.


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11/17 Hi ! Started today at 9:20 & will work until we can . She appears fidigity again with feet swinging , arm & pencil waving & hand shaking , but she does settle down to work w/out a problem. At 9 : 30 we took a 2min book break .


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11/18 Hi E.,

I talked to Tom about Kat coming off the bus . I'm sorry I forgot the boy's name . Could he bring her right to the classroom , and can for now this be supervised you for at least another month ? We don't feel comfortable yet with her being dropped off in the office without adult supervision .

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11/19 OK - no problem ! I'll continue to meet her at the bus . The class had a spelling test 1st thing @ 9:10 - 9 : 20 & Kat sat & was quiet as a mouse during this time . She wasn't working yet , just looking at her book . I was talking in the hall w/ Mrs. Br. & she sat &read ! ! We started the 1st group of papers @ 9:20 - 9:30 . Noproblem. I let her read for a minute . I showed her my pictures from ARUBA & there was one of me w/ a parrot on my head & I'm holding one on each hand . She looked at it & I asked her who's this ? ( My hair was pulled back in ponytail & I was wearing a bathing suit) she said "Mrs. L. ", and then, " Good Golly -a parrot ! ! " She turned to me with a huge grin & hugged me ! That was great ! She started on the 2nd @ 9 : 35 - 9 : 50. Fantastic ! 40 mins ! !

She did the B pages fine - they can be A's . She said NO! NO! when I took out the writing calendar , & pushed it away . So I gave her 3 pages & offered it again. She still resisted so I had her stand up & recite her phone # . When she sat down she held my hand & pushed the papers away she "Help me ." I decided to write the info on the board & she copied it w/ out any problems. We worked here until 10:15 . Back in the room now w/ the 3rd group of worksheets . It's now 10:30 & we didn't get to finish everything . Have a great weekend - I sent home some paper & writing journals for you . E.


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11/21 Hi E., is Wednesday morning good ? Thanks for the papers & journals . The paper we have has space between each line I think that Kat needs that for now. The journals are great I will try those as soon as Kat is up to writing all lower case letters & words . Weare also starting to work on drawing at home that will be great for the future .


PS I'll keep the journals for now if you don't mind .


Wed . is great . See you then . This morning was a little unusual as it is a 1/2 day for students & the special schedules were all mixed up . She did the 1st & 2nd group of A's w/out any problems . It's now 9:50 ! She got upset when she saw her class picture - she shouted NO ! Bridget ! and pushed it away . I tried to explain to her that it wasn't Bridget , it was Kat , but she kept pushing it away . I did 2 A groups& she was doing so well , that I stayed in class & gave her the ' B " worksheets . ( we took some breaks ) It's now 10 : 15 & we've been in our class (Mrs. Br.'s) for 1 hr ! ! I stopped work now & went to the bathroom w/ her & then home . As you can see , we didn't finish all of today's work . But we made up for it by staying in class 1 full hr! ! Terriffic ! ! She did tell me todays date ,too ! What a wonderful day we had !


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11/22/94 Hi, That is wonderful news . I thought maybe once she is up to 1 hr consistently then we can work on her doing same activities as the other children. The worksheets will be great for writing and spelling tests. Any suggestions which activities we can go after next?



Hi ! So far another great morning . It's now 9:25 & we've been working now for 10 mins. I spoke w/ Mrs. d.C. re new work for Kat & she put in a call to J.R. Hopefully he'll be able to come tomorrow morning while you're here & we'll be able to sit down & discuss future goals .

Send in her library book & we'll choose a new one tomorrow. I think she has Aladdin. Well, another wonderful day ! We even did the " C " pages in Mrs. Br.'s room ! w/ my guidance ! Funny , when I told her it's time to pack up & go home she said NO ! See you tomorrow .



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11/23Hi, I will see you later , do you have the previous notebook , I'd like to keep it with Kat's Records


Hi ! So you will be away on the 2nd , So I'll tell J. & we'll schedule another time . I'll let you know .

New Goal:

Hi E.,

I talked to Tom about our discussion on Wednesday . He thought it was a great idea to try and maximize the time with the other children . So how about our next goal having Kat follow the other children's routine with the location , except everywhere she goes she will work on her worksheet for now . So she could go to health and computers but instead of what the other children are doing she would sit along and work on her worksheets.

We will make sure that you leave enough worksheets for 1 1/2 hour . We will also make sure that she can fully / independently do them at home before we send them to school .

You will not have to grade them but indicate if she made errors , needed help, or was frustrated in any way.

After she can go for 1 1/2 every day and follow the children's routine we will start to allign her activities to be more like the other children's activities. But for now the only activities she will do is the worksheets ( Except TPE - fun )

Do you see any problems with our new goal ?



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Hi ! Today was a pretty interesting day ,in that our schedule was different because of 1/2 days. Health was combined w/ 2 classes & was pretty noisy ,so we left &went to work on the computer . She did just fine . We played the same game you saw - Bouncy Bee learns words . She matches the word w/ the picture . We played it twice & I changed the word list to include window , door, table , bed, etc. There are 35 word lists to choose from . You & I can look them over together if you want . If not , I can just choose for her . After that , we went to the library & " browsed " for 10 mins . Then I told her I was counting to 10 & she should choose a book . When I got to5 - she got "frantic " & said " Help me!" Although , each book I pulled out from this particular section was a definite NO ! Finally , I got to 8 & she said Santa ! So we looked at all the Berenstain books until we found " Santa Bear ". Whew ! ! She looked at poems , geography , picture books & fairytales this morning . Back in the classroom, she did the 1st group of worksheets w/ out problems. I gave her a happy face for computer time & library time . I also gave her a happy face for the 1st set of worksheets . You'll see that she got some wrong . When she hands methe computer pile , I then go over them & show her her mistakes . She made many today ; I don't know why . At one point during the 2nd set of papers ,she cried out NO - & I had her stand up and said "lets go outside " she said NO more silly talk -quite loudly - but I took her out of the room anyway - she proceeded to wrap herself around me like a hug & her feet around my legs . She wouldn't let go . I finally disengaged her from me & had her stand up & face the wall for a minute. Then we went back inside & finished the rest of the work w/ out any sound at all ! I didn't get to watch her complete each page because I am busy writing to you about the day . The 2nd set of papers was done perfectly whenI just checked them . She hands them to me as she finishes each one . When I told her to pack up -she stood up& said NO ! NO ! Close your mouth ! Open your eyes ! I put my finger over her mouth & told her "Be quiet now ." and she was. What do you think caused these outbursts ? Also, let me know when J.R. can meet w/ you ? Thanks.


* Also - Idid not fill in the rest of the happy faces ( obviously ) as she didn't earn them .


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11/29 I'm not sure what happened yesterday,I will see you tomorrow morning .


P.S. lets hold off on computers until we can get her to behave properly in the classroom .

11/ 29 Tues

Hi ! We started the morning very verbal . She immed . wanted to look at the catalogues & didn't want to hang up her coat or pull down her chair . She cried out NO! & had silly talk . Once she settled down she was fine . ( 9 : 15 )

We started w/ her writing the date - she did fine . NO problems there . As you saw we had a great day !



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11/30 Wed .

We started w/ the calendar & she at first whimpered but stopped . She worked all morning & then we went out for TPE . A super day .



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