Kelsi was coming home from school every day, picking up a book and trying her best to read it. She didn’t know how to read since she was in a self-contained classroom and they really were not trying to teach reading. When I approached The Full Life Ahead Foundation about our dilemma, Lisa Manly wanted to see her IEP and records from the school. She then attended the IEP meeting with me as support.

After a lot of discussion, Lisa stated that the one thing that Kelsi continually asked to be able to do was to learn to read. She wanted to know if there was anyone at the meeting who could think of any possible way to make this happen! This got everyone talking and the teachers truly came up with some innovative ideas! One of them was to place Kelsi in a regular classroom with a “great” teacher who would help her learn to read as well as teach her other things that the other kids in the regular classroom learned. Everyone thought this was a terrific idea and left the meeting excited by the prospect of helping Kelsi make a dream come true.

It didn’t take long! By the end of the first 6 months, Kelsi was reading basic readers to me and all who would listen… and was VERY excited about it. She continued to learn to read, spell and her vocabulary expanded. One unexpected outcome too was that it helped with Kelsi’s articulation. She has come a LONG way! Today, she is in high school and having a blast with her peers!

Kelsi is able to go out to eat with her parents or friends, look over the menu and pick out the things she wants to eat. She then orders them by herself! She chooses books and reads for her own entertainment. She can do her schoolwork more independently. The list goes on! What a positive change!