“Knowledge of how students with ID take in, interpret,store and retrieve information is crucial for teacherswhen planning literacy assessments and instruction.” Check out our article on Teaching Foundational Reading Skills to Students With Intellectual Disabilities, recently published in TEACHING Exceptional Children.
Category Archives: Down syndrome
/twərk/ is an r-controlled syllable
Learning to read is hard work and for many kids, slow going. Knowing this, I always ask new students, “Why do you want to learn to read?” The answers are often poignant (“I want to read the birthday cards from my grandma”), sometimes practical (“I want to be able to tell the difference betweenContinue reading “/twərk/ is an r-controlled syllable”
I’ve got reading on the brain
I took a seminar once called “The Reading Brain.” It was a required part of my Orton Gillingham training. I remember being a bit concerned when the instructor handed out a two-page “Brain Word Bank” and I didn’t recognize 90% of the terms, but I was reassured when the first activity was coloring in differentContinue reading “I’ve got reading on the brain”
Is my child reading on grade level?
We often discuss reading achievement in terms of grade level, but we rarely acknowledge how imprecise the term “grade level” is. What exactly does it mean? How are “grade level” skills determined? In fact, there are no universally accepted criteria for establishing grade level reading skills and there are at least two good reasons toContinue reading “Is my child reading on grade level?”
As fast as you can, as slow as you must
Parents often ask me, “How long will it take my child to learn to read?” I wish I had a nice, neat answer to that question, but the truth is, I don’t know. Children learn at different rates, and my experience in teaching reading to children with Down syndrome is that concepts are often acquiredContinue reading “As fast as you can, as slow as you must”
Two years ago, Penelope came to our first assessment clinic for a Pre-K literacy screening. Here she is today, enjoying that popular activity: Reading Yourself to Sleep. One of the many little joys in a reader’s life.
Big batch of books!
This week, we will be sending out more than 75 donated books to families all over the world as part of Gabriella’s Birthday Book Giveaway! Thank you to all the people who donated books and a big thank you to R. J. Julia Booksellers for all your help (and the discount!). Most of all, thank youContinue reading “Big batch of books!”
Recently, we received an email from Gabriella, whose 16th birthday is coming up in May. In celebration of this happy occasion, Gabriella wanted to share something with others that brought her joy. Since reading is an important part of Gabriella’s life (and coincidentally, her birthday falls during Get Caught Reading Month), she chose to promoteContinue reading “Celebrate reading!”
Happy World Down Syndrome Day!
Celebrate the day by sharing a book with someone you love!
Picture of the week
From Mallury Pollard’s blog, where he writes: ” I promise she did not pose like that for the camera. ‘Horton Hatches the Egg’ really is that surprising!”
And the survey says…..
Thanks to all of you who wrote in to ask about the results of the survey I recently conducted on the literacy experiences of children with Down syndrome. I am still combing through the volumes of data but want to share some of the preliminary results. The response to the survey was phenomenal–we heard from moreContinue reading “And the survey says…..”
Celebrate World Down Syndrome Day!
In celebration of World Down Syndrome Day, I’d like to share a link to the National Down Syndrome Society “My Great Story” campaign. While you’re there, check out Elmo Care!
Love this article by Beverly Beckham
Although it doesn’t pertain to reading, I can’t resist sharing this story from Beverly Beckham about her grand-daughter, Lucy: Pictures can’t capture what love sees – South – The Boston Globe.
Pre-schoolers with iPads
I want to share a link to a great post about a pre-schooler learning letter identification from iPad apps. His mother writes that he has not been taught letter names or sounds at home or pre-school so it looks as if he may have learned them from “playing” with the iPad. Check it out:Techno KidContinue reading “Pre-schoolers with iPads”
and even MORE free literacy stuff!
A reader just wrote in to remind me of the extensive selection of high quality FREE resources for teachers, parents and administrators available from the Florida Center for Reading Research. Teachers can check out the Student Center Activities for children in kindergarten through fifth grade. In addition to free, printable materials there is also a search tool that allows you to match instructional routinesContinue reading “and even MORE free literacy stuff!”
More FREE Literacy stuff!
The Get Ready to Read! website is a treasure trove of free literacy resources. Designed to support both educators and parents, the site provides online games, activities, webinars, tool-kits, checklists, and more to support literacy development for preschool and kindergarten children. I especially love the Activity Cards , which are divided into levels so you can match activities to theContinue reading “More FREE Literacy stuff!”
Learning the Aleph-bet
This past Saturday, I attended my first B’nai Mitzvah ceremony. I was not very knowledgeable about this Jewish tradition, so I checked with a friend beforehand for advice to be sure I wouldn’t commit a terrible faux pas at this important event. She kindly sent me a task analysis on How to Behave at aContinue reading “Learning the Aleph-bet”
Guest post: Back to school tips from Sheryl Knapp!
Many parents have written in to ask how they can support their child’s literacy development at home, particularly in the area of reading comprehension and vocabulary development. I turned to Connecticut reading expert, Sheryl Knapp, who graciously agreed to write a guest post on this topic. To read more about Sheryl’s work, check out herContinue reading “Guest post: Back to school tips from Sheryl Knapp!”
Last weekend, I was tutoring a 21-year-old young woman with Down syndrome (I’ll call her Hannah) who had gone through her entire public school career without learning to read. Hannah is an engaging, bright and social person who is living a full life. She likes to dance (Hip Hop), she’s active in sports, and sheContinue reading “Long shots”
Great story from The Boston Globe
Beverly Beckham: Who wouldn’t want this child? ~The Boston Globe Nine years after her granddaughter Lucy was born, Globe columnist Beverly Beckham reflects on what was the best of times and the worst of times.