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Amy's Start Toward a Successful Future: Why is It Important to Talk About the Future?

By Amy Johnson

Attending IEP Meetings

When I was in 2nd through 4th grade, I started attending meetings to plan for my future. My mom wanted me to be involved and listen to people in my meeting. In the meeting, I felt so confused and overwhelmed when I listened to their discussions about my future. In 5th grade, I was still attending the IEP (in Texas they are called ARD) meetings to discuss my future and how to improve my education. By this time, I was very upset and still did not understand why I had to be involved in the meeting every year! My mom tried to explain why I had to attend the meeting and why it was important, but I still did not want to attend the meeting. Then, later when I was in the 6th through 7th grade, I finally started to participate and discuss issues on how to improve my education and plan my future a little bit at a time. Just in case, I had my advocate there to take over and tell them about my classes if I needed help.

Taking Charge of My IEP

Amy Johnson

In the 8th grade I finally decided to make my own PowerPoint to show people who came to my meeting - what I expected in order to improve my education, help my future to be successful and plan my goals. Everyone in the meeting really enjoyed and appreciated my presentation. I was the very first student who made the PowerPoint for the ARD meeting in my school at the Texas School for the Deaf. The teachers, staff, DARS, principal, etc. were fascinated by my PowerPoint, and they suggested that other students make one for their next meeting. In high school when I entered the 9th grade, I did the same thing as 8 th grade to present my PowerPoint. My high school principal, DARS, staff, etc. really loved it. My mom was proud of me because I took over and told people what they could do to help my future and improve my higher education. I made a lot of goals, and I want to get a good life.

Becoming a Presenter

One day my mom got a letter from a big conference. She decided to take me to her conference and show people my PowerPoint. I was accepted to go and do my presentation. They were so shocked and loved my PowerPoint. They asked me to send them my PowerPoint to show other students in their school. I became confident to present anywhere and help students to learn my PowerPoint. I want all students to do thing the same with a PowerPoint. I encouraged them because I want students to be able to show people what he/she needs to improve their education and make some goals so people could help her/him. If not, then students will not perform good in college and will struggle in their classes.

How to Make a PowerPoint

Slide 1

Amy's IEP (ARD)/Transition Meeting

Slide 2

My Accomplishments

  • Servied on student council grades 5-10 for vice-president
  • Participated in TechGirlz camp at NTID
  • Worked as assistant to videographer
  • Work for mom on office duties, wash car, clean patio, work in yard to earn money
  • Presented at conference
  • Volunteered to care Elementary school
  • Worked as assistant to research at Longhorn University
  • Participated at Jr. NAD conference
Slide 3

What I like best! And what I am good at!

  • Good with kids
  • Like science and math
  • Love to swim, and volleyball
  • Like being involved in activities and clubs
  • Love to question a lot
  • Like to help with people needed
Slide 4

What can my teachers do to help me?

  • Tutor for reading, advanced science & math and English
  • Help me with vocabulary
  • Help me find a summer job that match my personality
  • Help me pick good class to be ready for college
Slide 5

What kind of work I want when a teenager

  • I want to volunteer at a summer camp
  • I would like to earn money working with different jobs or taking care of children
  • I would like to work in science lab
  • Study human cell
Slide 6

What kind of work I want as an adult?

  • I want to work as psychologist
  • I want to work with sick children with cancer/disease
  • I want to work as forensic science
Slide 7

What can my teachers do to help me?

  • Tutor for reading, advanced science & math and English
  • Help me with vocabulary
  • Help me find a summer job that match my personality
  • Help me pick good class to be ready for college
Slide 8

Thank you for caring about my future!

Amy's Résumé

I have one more thing to tell you and suggest to you. I have a resume. A resume is most important for your jobs and college when you apply. You can put on your resume what you learned and experienced, and if you participated in different clubs and were involved in jobs/volunteering.

Amy's Resume

Employment Goal: Gain work experience to prepare me for my future.

Areas of Interest and Skills:
I am interested in math and science and enjoy very social settings with people. I plan to attend college so I can get the job I want.

Work Experience

  • Worked for a videographer as an assistant. Helped set up lights, lay electric lines, prepare sets. Supervisor: Dan Veltri, TreeHouse Productions.
  • Presented at a statewide conference on student experiences and opinions related to use of interpreters in school environments. Supervisor: Irma Webb.
  • Assist with registration table, passing out materials, etc. for various training events. Supervisor: Theresa Johnson
  • Wash car, do yard work and other odd jobs to earn money. Supervisor: Theresa Johnson
  • Worked as teacher assistant in Texas School for the Deaf summer school program with children, grades K-5. Supervisor: Heather Lievens
  • Served on the JrNAD 2009 planning committee, including serving as master of ceremonies for the Pageant. Current Chairperson for the planning of the 2010 Pageant.


  • Completed 8th grade with honor roll, currently in 9th grade, maintaining 4.0 gpa.


  • Received $1,000.00 award from Sertoma Club for essay on American Heritage
  • Member of the first champion volleyball team for middle school at TSD
  • Member of MathCounts team of 2008 which won 2nd place at NTID
  • Make honor roll every semester
  • Compete in the Book Wars every year
  • Member of Volleyball and track teams
  • Volunteer to read to elementary students
  • Member of Jr. NAD
  • Participant in the Academic Bowl
  • Member of cheerleading team

About the Author

Amy Johnson is a sophomore at the Texas School for the Deaf where she has a strong interest in math and science. She also serves as the VP for the Jr. NAD and Student Council and is on the volleyball, swim, and track teams. She loves her dogs, Boo and Lucy and enjoys her friends, shopping and travel.

-- February, 2011

See also:

Expectations in Transition Meeting - Encouraging Student Participation by Theresa Johnson

Tags: educators, parents

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