Kortnie at the 2011 JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes, Tempe Town Lake, Tempe, AZ

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Aims testing and T1D

Last week Kortnie's school did AIMS testing, these are the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards testing.  They are apparently a big deal, the schools and school districts get funding based on the children's grades on these tests.  I believe that next year the kids will have to pass these tests in order to advance to the next grade levels.

So, Kortnie's school is pretty pro active in getting parents on board and encouraging us to get them good dinners and breakfasts before testing as well as reminding us that the kids need lots of rest.

Kortnie usually wakes up and has breakfast around 7, school starts at 7:50, so she does have a bit of a post-breakfast spike in blood sugar in the mornings.  Testing was going to start at 8:05am.  I was worried about the blood sugar spike. 

I got her up right on time, but had her eat before she got dressed.  I also prepared breakfast for them.  I don't usually cook every morning, we eat a lot of cereal and oatmeal.  The kids like it, and generally we don't buy the super sugary stuff. 

Also, the kids would be having a snack at school before the test.  This I guess the school does so that kids aren't hungry during testing-sadly there are some kids who don't get breakfast at home in the mornings.  I didn't want Kortnie to be left out, but I wasn't too keen on the snacks they were giving the kids.  Oh, the snacks were just fine, but not really what I wanted for Kortnie.  They had juice and crackers mostly I think. 

We don't have a 504 in place for Kortnie, (we are doing one next year when she moves up to the big kids school) but her teachers and the other school staff have always been open with us and worked around our needs.

Our plan for Kortnie went this way...

-The night before we tried to have good dinners, no carby pasta or pizza that makes her spike throughout the night
-To bed at 8pm, read until 8:15pm and then lights out, I was diligent about her nighttime checks, to make sure she woke up at a good number in the morning
-Wake up at 6:15am,  eat at 6:30am, made them eggs, strawberries, and peanut butter toast one day, and the other day we had egg sandwiches and strawberries, both days they had milk (Vanilla Almond Milk for Kortnie)
-I sent in snacks for her, 3 peanut butter crackers, 1 slim jim, and Healthy Balance Juice. 15 carbs
-I made her a chart to follow on taking BG and snacks
     1. Check BG
     2. If number is over 150, eat snack and bolus for 15 carbs
     3. If number is 105-150, eat snack and bolus 10 carbs
     4. If number is 85-105, eat snack and bolus 7 carbs

     5. If number is lower than 85 or higher than 250 call mom
-I also made sure that the basket we keep in Kortnie's classroom had plenty of low snacks and other supplies, because they technically were not allowed to leave the classroom during the test.  Most of the time Kortnie tests and treats in class, in extreme or stubborn low and highs she goes to the health office, with an escort of course. 
-I clarified with Nurse, Principal, and Teacher that if Kortnie had any extreme lows or highs during testing she would be able to leave the classroom, they were fine with that, but said in lieu of an escort (usually a classmate or teacher), the teacher would have to call the nurse or office staff to come get her. I also clarified that if she needed to use the bathroom then she would be able to.  I did advise Kortnie that she needed to use the bathroom before class and that she should only use her bathroom privileges if she REALLY needed to go.
-Her second sets of testing were in the afternoon after lunch.  I made sure we packed her lunch without excessive carbs and with protein.  I didn't limit her, I just paid better attention to what she was taking and helped her to make good choices.  I told her and the nurse to call me if she was High or Low at lunchtime, like above 250 or lower than 80.  I also told her at recess to run around a little, not to sit on the steps and talk with her friends.  Basically I told her to get her wiggles out, figured that might help the spike.  And then after lunch I had her follow the above plan for snacks before the test. 

Overall, she did really good.  She was responsible (with the help of her wonderful teacher), I never got a phone call about crazy numbers.  She said the tests were easy, but it wasn't any fun to have to sit still and quiet while the other kids finished (they had to sit and read books if they finished early).  I looked thru her meter and her numbers were all good, I can't remember what they were exactly, but I do remember thinking they were good numbers and I wished we could have numbers like that all the time. 

It does go to show that with planning, diligence, good cooking, rest, and hard work from both Kortnie and I we can keep better numbers.  I'm not going to lie though, it was exhausting, the planning, a few extra checks, making sure our "team" was all on the same page.  And luckily Kortnie's body was cooperating and not growing or trying to get sick or anything.  I am all on board with doing the extra work to keep her healthy, but sometimes a kids gotta be a kid and sometimes, a mom has to let them.


  1. We have FCAT... same thing, different name. We have the same routine... I cook in an attept to keep those numbers in range for testing, but sometimes, no matter what you do, it goes the way diabetes wants it to. Justin had 3 days of testing. He got up, ate and bolused himself exactly the same for the 3 days... two days were great and then day 3... BAM!!!! a bg of 61. ARG!!!

    Glad it all went well for you guys.

    1. I know what you mean, I was glad it was only 2 days of testing, my 4th grade daughter had 4 days of testing and I did the same for her, made good dinners, and breakfasts, but didn't have to worry and stress about BG numbers....next year Kort will be doing the 4 days of testing, I'm not looking forward to it