Tell us about yourself?
Hi all, my name is Dani, I am the proud mum of a 6-year-old daughter Gracie.
Each night after the chaos and juggle of after school activities, dinner and showers my husband and I take the time to read to our kids. Now that Gracie has started to learn how to read, this time each night is also spent listening to her read.
How did you know that your child needs glasses?
Gracie is my eldest child, so when it came to the speed or way she was learning to read, I had nothing to compare to. Call it mother’s intuition, I had a started to feel that perhaps Gracie was a little slow and was struggling to see correctly. The way she held her book and the way she seemed to be concentrating very hard were small factors that made me question her eyesight. She had spent a whole year at school and the teachers had never brought to my attention that she may be struggling with her eyesight. Thankfully I went with my gut and had Gracie’s eyes tested. When yes in fact, she did need glasses!
How have you found the transition for Gracie wearing glasses?
We discovered that Gracie struggled with her peripheral vision and in turn when reading she has to concentrate very hard to track words across the page and was very tunnel like in her approach. The optometrist explained that to help improve Gracie’s vision it would be ideal for her to only wear her glasses inside and to take them off when she is outside, getting her to do lots of big movements, like spinning around, cartwheels and jumping.
What's your best mum hack?
Now if you are a parent or caregiver of a typical forgetful (unless it’s about that ice-cream I promised) 6 year old child, I am sure you will feel my pain about the fact I had to somehow get Gracie to put on her glasses at the beginning of the school day, remove for recess, put back on after recess, remove for lunch, put back on after lunch and so on and so forth. Honestly, I was beginning to think it impossible for her to get into this routine and then to actually stick to it.
One morning when I was changing the home readers for her class, I peeked into the classroom to see if she had her glasses on. Just as suspected – she did not! I thought long and hard about what I could do to help remind her, like putting a bright coloured elastic band around her glasses case, a note on her desk, bugging the teacher to remind her. But then I had a winning idea! Her Fitbit alarms. Luckily for me Gracie is happy to wear her smart watch everyday as she loves tracking her steps and telling the time. Her smart watch also has an alarms feature which gives me the ability to set up multiple alarms via the app.
Brilliant I thought, I will set alarms to go off with the word “glasses” appearing on her screen for the start of school, end of recess and end of lunch! Success!!! Gracie absolutely loved this idea and really got into the swing of the alarm going off and putting her glasses on!
Sometimes at the end of each day she greets me with her glasses on and I have to gently remind her to leave them on her desk (we have a 2nd pair for home) however all in all she has embraced the Fitbit alarm majority of the time and puts her glasses on and off when required.
Forgetful 6-year-old = none vs proud mum = one!