October 11, 2009 6:44 AM
Down syndrome books - new for parents and children
Gifts 2: How People with Down Syndrome Enrich the World is a collection of 70 stories by siblings, grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles, edited by Kathryn Lynn Soper show how acceptance, courage, friendship, awareness, and joy are the gifts enjoyed by those who have someone with Down syndrome in their lives. Friends, teachers, medical professionals, and coaches also share the joys of knowing and caring for someone with Down syndrome.
Like the previous book, Gifts: Mothers Reflect on How Children with Down Syndrome Enrich Their Lives, Gifts 2 helps us see that the hopes and dreams family and friends have for a child with Down syndrome are similar to the ones we have for any child. And, more often than not, expectations are fulfilled--if not always the way we anticipated they would be. A grandparent, inspired by his grandson's strong will, discovers the ability to persevere and not give up on a job. A brother who assumed he would be the person helping his sibling with Down syndrome describes how often it is the other way around. A young teacher remembers her first student with Down syndrome and it gives her strength and clarity when she is faced with her own child's diagnosis.
This heartfelt collection is a source of comfort to other families, and offers insight to anyone who wonders how people with Down syndrome live today. Give the ultimate gift, share both volumes with family and friends, your child's teacher or pediatrician--help raise public awareness and provide others a point-of-view they might otherwise miss.
Fasten Your Seatbeat: A Crash Course on Down Syndrome for Brothers and Sisters
by Brian Skotko (author of Theology and Down Syndrome: Reimagining Disability in Late Modernity
and brother of a young woman with Down syndrome) is a great resource for families, speaking directly to the unspoken questions and concerns of siblings.
From the School Library Journal:
Grade 4-9-Skotko and Levine address preteens and teenagers who have a sibling with Down syndrome, answering questions that have been generated through their work with this population. Siblings want to know everything from what causes this condition to how to be protective and how they can make sure things are fair at home. They want to help when they can, but don't want to be burdened with too much responsibility. In clear, concise language, the authors ensure that siblings know that all of these concerns are normal and they are careful to honor their feelings. They point out that it's okay to feel jealous of a sibling with Down syndrome, just as it's okay to feel jealous of any sibling at different points in the life of a family. The authors are also quick to suggest that readers consult with their parents or seek help from another adult if situations get too difficult to manage. With a wealth of information, numerous resources, and the reassurance that all siblings of people with disabilities sometimes go through periods of contradictory feelings, this is an excellent guide for young people who are trying to figure out how to negotiate an often-confusing relationship.-Wendy Smith-D'Arezzo, Loyola College, Baltimore, MD
Also two board books for babies and toddlers with Down Syndrome: