Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Here's what happens when you leave a tutor with poor motor planning skills in charge of a tutorial on wheelchair mobility...

A multitude of blunders, of course.

Today I managed to tip a student out of a wheelchair going forwards down a kerb. Not quite the demonstration I was hoping for. Luckily she had a quick reaction speed and managed to jump free before she hit the ground.

That was after I'd fallen at the last hurdle of disassembling and reassembling a manual wheelchair. All was going well until I got to putting the footplates back on at the end. There's nothing worse than having twenty pairs of eyes watching you struggle with what should be the easiest part of the whole job.

And all of that happened after I arrived somewhat underprepared, not having watched the mile long list of videos on using various items of equipment that are part of the required pre-reading and viewing for the session. Every other week I've watched them. I didn't get to it this week. So obviously it would follow that a student would ask me about a piece of equipment from one of the videos, that I had sitting at the front of the room and couldn't work out what it was or what to do with it. I'd hoped that I might be able to ask my teaching partner later about it so I could show the students in a future session.

So the student asked if we were going to have a demonstration of the equipment (something that I now know is designed to assist with lifting a wheelchair into the boot of a car). And then I had to own up and say I didn't know what it was. I ended up having to get her to demonstrate to the rest of the group. Embarrassing.

One of those teaching days that I would like to erase from memory forever. Or the next best thing, I hope I'll learn from all the mistakes and do a better job next time around.

I'll be praying for a better day tomorrow, when I have to do a formal memory assessment with a guy who's had a stroke and now has some memory loss. I've never done the test before. I looked at it last week and thought it wouldn't be too difficult. Hope that turns out to be true.

I feel like I'm on a really steep learning curve at the moment. It's not an easy place to be.


Deb said...

OH,ugh! Yuck day! We all have them but they are no fun. Chocolate? Sending you a virtual block.

Meredith said...

That is an absolute shocker. Poor you. Clearly there is truth in that saying, "Never work with animals, small children or wheelchairs." May the new day be better.

Sarah said...

Oh sending you a virtual hug, Karen. Those days are never nice. I have a good friend who is in a wheelchair (she has Cerebral Palsy) and I've accidentally crashed her into things while pushing her around. Fortunately she is very patient, gracious and has a great sense of humour.

Helen said...

Me too - not that I've switched from Paeds to adults like you! Just trying to learn to deliver a service to younger kids with ASD!

What is it about OTs having poor motor planning - when I said to HB's OT that he doesn't run properly, she shrugged and said "Neither can I !"

Ben McLaughlin said...

hope things are getting better Karen