Thursday, December 4, 2014

Satin Hands and an Intervention....Strange Combination

I never used to need lotion for my hands.  However, ten years ago, I started teaching my varying exceptionalities pre-k class and I found myself washing my hands 100 times a day.  And let's face soap is not gentle on your hands.

About that time, I discovered Satin Hands from Mary Kay and could probably have been their poster child.  (I'm not a Mary Kay consultant, I just happen to really like this product.)  The ladies that I work with found out how much I like it, and it is now a frequent gift for me during the holidays and at my birthday.  So now, I actually have a set a home and at school.

Little did I know that my Satin Hands would become an intervention this year!

I have a little girl in my class who tends to scratch her arms when she perceives work as being too difficult.  It can be pretty bad on occasion and she has picked scabs and opened old scratches.  Bleeding in the classroom is not a good thing!  Interrupting reading groups or math groups 3-4x every week to deal with bleeding is also not a good thing.

One day, I was using the lotion while she was at my table and she asked me what it was.  I told her it was lotion and asked her if she wanted a little squirt.  She said yes and "mmm, smells good."  Then I got my bright idea.  If she likes the smell and the feel of the lotion, maybe we could replace her scratching behavior by asking for some lotion.  I asked her if she would like to do that and of course she said yes.  So I told her she could use the lotion but she was not allowed to scratch.

I now have a tube of lotion at my reading table.  She still sometimes starts to scratch in moments of academic frustration, but with a simple verbal prompt of "Mary, do you want some lotion?"  She will stop and gently rub her arms.  We haven't had a bleeding episode since we started. It is MUCH easier and less distracting to give her a quick squirt of lotion than it is to deal with washing, drying and band-aiding arms when she scratches and draws blood.