Archive: Special Needs

Educational Activities for Children with Down Syndrome

Children with Down syndrome develop at a slower rate than most children without Down syndrome. They face challenges, such as being slower to learn how to talk and care for themselves. This certainly doesn’t mean these things are impossible. They just take a bit longer and some extra dedication. Here are some fun, educational activities for children with Down syndrome that will help make learning fun and  a little less frustrating for little ones.

 

Use visuals to learn sounds.

Often, visual learning works best for children with Down syndrome. Sometimes, sign language can help little ones communicate and learn verbal language. You can either learn actual sign language or invent your own. For example, maybe touching the mouth represents hunger.

 

Take turns.

Teaching a child with Down syndrome to take turns can amplify learning experiences. Communication relies heavily on taking turns, having a listener and a speaker, but sometimes this concept doesn’t come naturally. Demonstrating this turn taking and even verbally communicating “OK now it’s my turn” can help the learning process happen a bit faster.

 

Use repetition to your advantage.

Studies show that kids with Down syndrome usually need at least a 100-word vocabulary before they start transitioning from one-word statements to multi-word thoughts. Repetition can help accelerate learning to speak. Think of it as an add-on game. If the child says, “Car,” say, “Car. Fast car.”

 

Sources:

-“Down Syndrome” Kids Health: http://kidshealth.org/kid/health_problems/birth_defect/down_syndrome.html

-“12 Booster Activities for Kids with Down Syndrome” Parents.com: http://www.parents.com/health/down-syndrome/booster-activities-for-kids-with-down-syndrome/

-“Down Syndrome Learning Activities” Pinerest: http://www.pinterest.com/trudycallan/down-syndrome-learning-activities/

-“Top Five Instructional Strategies for Students with Down Syndrome” Special Ed Post: http://specialedpost.com/2013/01/31/top-five-instructional-strategies-for-students-with-down-syndrome/

-Photo courtesy of kdshutterman,/freedigitalphotos.net

Spotting Warning Signs of Autism

While each child is different and develops at a different pace, it’s important to compare what your child is going through to what’s normal. An abnormality may indicate autism. The earlier a developmental delay is identified, the better chances, depending on the level of autism, your child has of integrating into regular school programs. There is growing evidence that shows intervention during preschool or earlier has the largest impact on autistic children. Here are some things to keep an eye out for:

 

Early signs in infants

Even though autism is usually diagnosed between the ages of 2 and 3, there are earlier signs to keep an eye out for, even in infants. If your baby rarely smiles when you approach or smiled at, that may be a sign of a developmental delay.

 

Most babies are babbling and making repetitive sounds by the time they’re 6 months old. Between 6 months and a year, they should start responding to their name. If your child does not seem to be making these noises or responding to their name, they may and early signs of developmental delays.

 

Lack of eye contact

One of the most common signs of autism is a lack of eye contact. This sign can sometimes show in infants, but as your child grows into a toddler, if you notice a lack or avoidance of eye contact, you should look into possible autism immediately.

 

Unusual physical movements

In as early as infancy, autistic children may move differently that those without autism. They may stiffen their limbs, or make repetitive motions with their hands. As they get older, these movements will often continue.

 

Unusual communication skills

Kids with autism often show abnormalities communicating early on. They may not respond appropriately in conversation with peers, struggle alone instead of asking for help or show a smaller variety of vocabulary words than their peers.

 

Sources:

-Wetherby, Amy. “Infant Toddler Checklist.” Communication and Symbolic Behavior Scales Developmental Profile.

-“10 early warning signs of autism.” CBS News.

-Warner, Jennifer. “Cues May Signal Autism in Toddlers.” WebMD.

-Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles/freedigitalphotos.net

List of Special Needs Child Care Providers in San Francisco

Elana J. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Elana “I have worked with children on the autism spectrum in addition to children with OCD and ADHD. I’m very comfortable providing care to children of varying developmental abilities.” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

Katherine C. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Katherine “I have experience with preemies, asthmatics, children on the Autism spectrum and children with ADHD.” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

Stephanie B. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Stephanie “i will do as directed and trained.” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

Alyssa B. is a Babysitter who offers special needs support | Note from Alyssa “I have experience with autism. I was actively involved in an autism awareness club at my high school where we had guest speakers come and teach us about autistic children and how to care for them. I currently tutor a high school student with aspergers, helping with reading, writing, and building vocabulary and comprehension skills.” Contact this Special Needs Babysitter

Abigail T. is a Babysitter who offers special needs support | Note from Abigail “In my childcare experience, I have worked with children with autism, learning disabilities, and physical health issues. While I do not have specialized training in caring for children with special needs, I am dedicated to learning about your child’s specific needs and working to provide the care and support required to keep them safe, healthy and happy.” Contact this Special Needs Babysitter

Vicki T. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Vicki “I have worked with young children (6-years- to 13-years-old) in group home settings; one-on-one, intensive, in-home behavioral therapist for children with autism (6-years- to 17-years-old).” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

Julie S. is a Babysitter who offers special needs support | Note from Julie “Very familiar with OT issues, children on the autism spectrum, and speech disorders” Contact this Special Needs Babysitter

Monique D. is an Inhome Child Care Provider who offers special needs support | Note from Monique “Please inquire – each child is different” Contact this Special Needs Inhome Child Care Provider

Laura G. is a Babysitter who offers special needs support | Note from Laura “I worked at a special needs day camp for 8 years, have been certified by the ARC of New Jersey and have provided one on one care for multiple special need children.” Contact this Special Needs Babysitter

Hayley O. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Hayley “While employed I worked with various children aged 2-12 years old providing individualized treatment for autism spectrum disorders. I was responsible for directing one on one therapy that includes discrete trials training, applied behavioral analysis, relationship development intervention, and errorless learning. I implemented and designed child specific behavior plans, and worked with the parents to encourage their involvement and influence in improving their children’s behaviors. While in college I provided individualized in-home treatment implementing ABA early intervention through the Far Northern Regional Center with a four year old girl with severe autism. My intent was to meet each one of her behavioral goals including communication improvement, decrease in negative behaviors, and increase her skills in attending and instruction following.” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

Genesis H. is an Inhome Child Care Provider who offers special needs support | Note from Genesis “I can work with anyone under any circumstances. I may require a little training but I am a fast learner and will do my best.” Contact this Special Needs Inhome Child Care Provider

Jacky E. is a Nanny who offers special needs support | Note from Jacky “I am a trained occupational therapist” Contact this Special Needs Nanny

List of Special Needs Preschools and Child Care Centers in Chicago

Here is our most recent list of preschools and child care centers who offer special needs support in the Chicago, IL area.

Easter Seals Gilchrist-Marchman Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 6 weeks to 12 years

McKinley Roseland Head Start | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

Bridgeport Child Development Center II | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 11 years

McKinley Trumbull Park Day Care | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

Firman Community Services Day Care | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

Firman Community Services Daycare Rec. Program | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

Firman Community Services | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 12 years

McKinley Ersula Howard Child | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 17 years

Cyc Abc Polk Brothers Youth Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 12 years

Marcy-Newberry Association Newberry Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 5 years to 13 years

Marcy-Newberry Association Marcy Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 13 years

Englewood – Messiah Head Start | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 5 years

The Guadalupe Reyes Children & Family Care | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 weeks to 5 years

Loren Children Learning Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 1 year to 6 years

El Valor Carlos H Cantu Child & Family Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 weeks to 5 years

YMCA Marshall Family Development Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 6 weeks to 3 years

Marcy-Newberry Association Austin Town Hall | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

YMCA Garfield Early Head Start | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 5 years

Daley Child Development Center – Child Care Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 10 years

Ada S Mckinley Maggie Drummond Mem DCC | Learn more about this center here

Albany Park Headstart | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 5 years

Firman Community Services South | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 2 years to 12 years

Ada S. Mckinley Wright Renaissance Child Care Center | Learn more about this center here
Accepts children ages 3 years to 17 years

 

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