13 – lucky for some!

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I have been here for 13 days now. I was born of the 13th day of the month and the number seems to mean alot to me.

On this 13th day, I have been very lazy. I enjoyed lying outside, reading my wonderful book by Kranowitz! She is an incredible author, I am learning so much from her everyday.

The rest of my day has been preparing for the week ahead at placement, ensuring I have lunch & smart clothing prepared. I spent some time drafting a short letter to parents about the handwriting group we are due to run.

And that my lovely readers, is about all I did today.

I’m excited for October coming tomorrow, 28 day countdown to World OT day (27.10.12) & then we have OT week in November.

Lots to read, lots to look forward too! I wont let one brown leaf hold me back!

Good night OT world.

NOTE TO FAMILY: Happy Sunday, I hope you all enjoyed your roast dinners.

Day 12…

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On the 12th day of my erasmus placement, I have been quite productive but also has some time to relax. 

I spent a lot of time looking up those words I didn’t understand. 

As I understand it ‘somatosensory’ is the ability to receive sensory information and be able to recognize what an object is, e.g. searching through your handbag and knowing when you have found your keys. 

As I understand it, diadochokenises is any movement in a flexion or an extension, e.g. pointing toes to the floor, reaching up a high shelf. 

I feel better now after understanding theses terms, as well as a few others. I have started to make my own sensory glossary, if possible, I will try and attach it to my blog! 

NOTE TO FAMILY: Hope CPFC give you the result you want today. 

Day 11…

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On the 11th day I went to university induction and received some information about the university I am now attending. After this I came back to the accommodation and finished my first draft learning contract! I was pleased to have a draft completed, it means I can spend the weekend starting some more reading and editting my contract. 

The rest of my afternoon was spent reading another chapter of my book, it is so hopeful for my learning. I recommend it to anybody. 

Another lovely thing happened today…I was surprised by one fellow OT and given a beautiful bunch of flowers, a vase & as you can see a lovely blue pot for my growing plant. My friend just did it out of the goodness of her heart & all in secret, it was very very kind. I really appreciated it- thank you! 

Everything has kind of fallen into place today. The plant no has feels safe & cosy & secure, similarly to me, finishing that learning contract was a weight off, reading a chapter & having a nice surprise. 

NOTE TO FAMILY: Dad, today is the 28th. To my beautiful dog I wish you a happy birthday. To my auntie, it was lovely to speak to you. To my brother, I miss you today! To my mum, smile it is the weekend! To my boyfriend, who I could not be more proud of today, not only has he completed & succeeded in 3 meetings at work TODAY alone but Fifa 13 was released today and Jelly logo was on the back of CPFC kits- the deal he completed last season, through lots of hard work, perseverance & commitment. You will achieve great things. Full moon tonight, sweet dreams. 

Day 10…

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So, 10 days later: 

I am on in my accommodation, I now have 6 housemates, I have picked up the odd word of the language and met most of the staff & children on placement. 

If you look at the plant today, you can see the browning on one of the leaves. I think this represents my feelings today. I had a good day on placement but all in all I felt a little over-whelmed. I hope other OT students out there will agree with me, it suddenly sunk in that this is the final placement before qualifying, so arguable the most important. I prepared a lot before I left home and today when I was reading the children’s reports I felt I had just forgotten everything. I have a list of about 20 words/SI terms that I don’t understand and need to learn, including, diadokokiniesis & somatosensory. The reports had been written by previous OT students and I just thought to myself, I couldn’t possibly write a report like that! In my mind I am 99% sure that this is what the other students felt the first time they read one of these reports. 

Instead of continuing to feel overwhelmed, I plan to read more, research harder and use my peers for peer support and reflection. In less than 90 days time I will telling you what those terms mean, how I have used them in my interventions and be able to evaluate there effectiveness. 

Now to the books I go. 

NOTE TO FAMILY: I miss you all today! 

Day 9…

On the 9th day of erasmus, I am feeling quite settled. We seem to having more and more housemates all the day, I have 3 now. One from Germany, one from Spain and one from Japan. It is good to meet a range of people from different cultures. It will interested to see who else arrives as there are another 4 bedrooms to fill.

Whilst on placement today, we were able to meet some of the children that we will be working with. At first we played with all the pre-school children and completed a variety of games, some children were very engaged, some were very upset that there parents had gone, some children could not/did not want to engage in play with others and spent lots of time looking around the room, walking at a slow pace. It was challenging as each child had a very different need and different response to others. However, it was useful to see how they engage and this will be helpful once we start 1:1 intervention sessions.

Within the school there is a sensory room. The room had a floor with all matts on, a ball pen, 3 swings with different attachments, exercise ball, various balls, large bean bags & cushions. The room is made up of different colour’s, especially red, blue, yellow & green. Myself and the other OT student were able to observe two autistic children playing in the sensory room. The children reacted differently too the environment. One child was very vocal & singing whilst swinging whilst another child was mostly silent.

After school, I spent a lot of time trying to complete my learning contract, it is nearly there. I am trying to review my ongoing learning need from my intervention placement and use them as a guide to ensure I develop them during this placement.

I shall now go and read more of Kranowitz () book in the hope to finish it this weekend.

The write up for last nights #OTalk is now complete…(BAOT 2012). I was really pleased to feature in the BAOT/COT storify.

NOTE TO FAMILY: My boyfriend can make me laugh from the other side of the world & thats why he means the WORLD to me!

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References: 

BAOT/COT (2012) #OTalk on professionalism: tackling lapsed standards and finding useful measures. Avaialble at: <http://www.cot.co.uk/news/social-media/otalk-professionalism-tackling-falling-standards-and-finding-useful-measures> [Accessed: 26.09.12]

Kranowitz, C. S. (2005) The Out of Sync Child. New York: Perigree

Day 8…

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I hope the pictures of the plant are not becoming boring, they seem to be very similar everyday thus far, unless I take the picture from a slightly different angle. As you look at different parts of the plant you can see that some of the changes. 

That’s a little bit of how I feel today, so parts of this placement for me are blossoming and in just 8 days, I feel more confident in carrying out sensory integration and I feel I can recognize different sensory processing difficulties, I have learnt this through, reading, observing and peer discussion. Other aspects, like adjusting to a new climate have been quite a challenge and I am feeling extra tired, I think its the lack of water. I need to drink plenty more! 

Today we finalised all our ERASMUS paper work as there had been a few hiccups there and no its all complete. 

I spent the rest of the afternoon, reading the BAOT/COT info for tonight’s #OTalk on professionalism & I also read through ‘Smart Moves’. 

Smart Moves (Drew 2006) is a motor skills development programme created by an OT that is used to assess motor skills for children and devise their strengths & needs following this in there very own smart moves journal. The programme is easy to follow and fun for the children, I am looking forward to trying it out on placement. I feel it could also be used as an outcome measure. 

NOTE TO FAMILY: If I fall through the bed, i’ll see you in the spring. 

References 

Drew, S. (2006) Smart Moves. Monmouthshire: Smart CC Publishing. 

 

Day 7…

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So, thats it, we have been here for a week. We have started placement and ready for the next 3 months to start taking shape. 

Placement day 1, is always full of orientation, settling in and trying to remember peoples names. It is very difficult to remember names, especially when they are in a different language. After a quiet day 1, I came home and worked on my learning contract which seems to be taking shape already. I am hoping to do something special in OT week and have added this onto my learning contract. I am waiting for the right decision to spring to mind.

It looks as though we are going to be running weekly handwriting classes with years 3’s and other sensory motor groups with all year groups, co-ordination workshops & other one-to-one sessions depending on the childrens needs. 

I am looking forward to completing orientation and completing some real OT. 

Lots too look forward too. 

NOTE TO FAMILY: It was funny skyping the dog, he was looking out the window to find me!