In chapter 13 Melody reflects on some of the things that her little sister can do. She talks about how she wishes she could do things like show attitude through movement and draw whatever she wants. Mrs. V wins tickets to an aquarium. Melody immediately thinks about all the animals she can see and how badly she wants to go. When Mrs. V states there is an extra ticket, she immediately begs for Rose to join them. Mrs. V quickly understands the request and the day is set up. I personally loved that one of Mrs. V’s first thoughts was “Just think of all the new words we’ll gather.” She is always thinking about how to make experiences the best for Melody. Melody loves every moment of the trip until they come across the two most dreaded people. Claire and Molly make the group feel a variety of emotions (embarrassment, anger). Claire and Molly are quickly shot down when Mrs. V points out that Claire isn’t perfect either, she has braces. Isn’t this true…. we all have things to make us more ‘perfect’…. some things are just easier to identify.
Chapter 14 focuses on Melody’s desires for a more dynamic and expressive communication device. She wants it to be more like a computer and generate speech for her so she can truly be heard. I think about how communication devices can be limiting, especially as we are building students up for more dynamic devices. Melody compares the words “pasted on my dumb plastic board” to all the words she could use if she had a device more like a computer. She tells her aide that she wants to do her report about Stephen Hawkings. She ponders questions like: does his wife put him on the toilet? and how does he manage to be a dad? In this chapter I really saw Melody open her mind to all the possibilities a more complex communication device offers.
In chapter 15 Melody gets her communication device! She searched the internet with her aide to find the perfect one for her. Which brings up the question AGAIN…… where is the SLP in their life!?!? The rich vocabulary this device brings into her life is unmeasurable. When she says “I love you” for the first time (out loud) to her mom and dad…… wow!!