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Celebrating Quentin's Progress is a Joy

Four- year-old Quentin has a very contagious laugh. He is intelligent and inquisitive. He loves reading, singing, dancing, and climbing. He absolutely loves to cuddle with Mommy and Daddy. Even without his basic words he has SO much to say!

Quentin has a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder Level 2. After he was dismissed from his previous daycare for stimming and making squealing sounds, a colleague of Anndi, Quentin’s mom mentioned Rainbows Early Care and Education program (ECE).

Quentin’s parents, Anndi and Josh were already familiar with Rainbows’ Infant/Toddler Services program, but not ECE. They had reached out to Rainbows with their concerns about Quentin’s speech delay and had worked with Speech Language Pathologist Joanna Wiebe until Quentin turned 3.

Once again, they reached out to Rainbows for help with preschool. “We called and were hoping for a tour and the possibility of getting in early summer of 2023,” said Anndi. “We met with Michelle Croomes, Early Care and Education Coordinator, toured, and asked about when enrollment might start for summer. Michelle is the MOST amazing woman! She let us know that she did have a spot and Quentin would be able to start the next Monday. I was in literal tears. Currently, Quentin is on a waiting list for Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) services. Rainbows have been an absolute blessing to us!”

“The whole Shaw family has been such a pleasure to get to know and so easy to work with,” said Michelle. “Watching and celebrating Quentin’s progress is truly a joy!”

Since joining Rainbows, Quentin has gone from being primarily nonverbal to using his words daily. He still struggles with functional language but has gotten much better at expressing himself without just screaming. He has also become more social. Lead Teacher Autumn Hutchison and his other wonderful teachers have also introduced him to a number of new foods and activities. Quentin struggles with eating and Autumn has worked with the family to find new ways of introducing foods.

“Since Quentin has been in my classroom, we have learned a lot from each other,” said Autumn. “I have learned to play dinosaurs alongside him and anticipate the joy of the sound of his laugh. He has learned how to taste new food and how to stay with teachers when walking in the hall. Our classroom loves Quentin. The students ask where he is when he isn’t at school, and they try to give him hugs when they see him again, even though hugging is not something Quentin accepts from everyone. I don’t like to consider myself Quentin’s teacher; I think of him as my teacher. He has helped me be a better teacher. If teachers struggle to teach in a way their students can learn, then the teachers need to accommodate their teaching for the children.”

“Autumn is an amazing teacher,” said Anndi. “She has a wonderful relationship with Quentin and our whole family. I feel the absolute love she has for Quentin and all her students. Autumn is all about communication and working with the families.”

“I can’t wait to hear about his goals and dreams when he is ready to tell us,” said Anndi. “Our dream for him is to be happy, healthy, and loved. We want him to know who he is and know that he can do anything! After starting with Rainbows, I feel like these dreams are much more achievable with the right support and relationships.”

Josh and Anndi started dating in high school (23 years ago) and have been married 12 years. They struggled with infertility for several years and were surprised with Quentin in 2019. The family loves to go hiking, read, and play with dinosaurs. They love being outside. They enjoy watching movies and coloring. Josh, Anndi and Quentin’s favorite thing to do is hike at Santa Fe Lake and toss rocks in the water.

“I honestly can’t say enough about how much Rainbows has impacted our family for the better,” said Anndi. “For the first time our son is happy to go to school. He is sad when he misses school, and he doesn’t immediately want to leave when we pick him up. He has friends. Thinking about how much progress Quentin has made makes me ‘happy teary’.”

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