However, I am good at using what we have, and I'm good at shopping online. Here's my lazy mom version of a learning post!
Flashcards: I know everyone is big on sight reading for kids with Down syndrome. We have used various word flashcards, but Ellie suddenly is into letters. We have this textured set in lower and upper case, and Ellie loves it. She knows almost all of her uppercase letters, but gets a lot of the lowercase (p/b/d/q) confused. I purchased these on zulily.
The park: Gross motor skills and following directions are my two favorite things for Ellie to work on at the park. Add in some sensory play with dirty park sand and you're golden. And a bath afterward. Why is park sand always so gross? But Ellie loves the park to work on balance, digging, and even social skills.
Stickers: Ellie's fine motor skills aren't fantastic. She gets glasses soon (possibly this week!) and I'm hoping that will help. In the meantime, we have been working a lot with stickers for fine motor skills.
|This is supper fuzzy, but it's sparkle stickers.|
Repetitive books: Brown Bear, Brown Bear. Polar Bear, Polar Bear. Ellie recites them and I think the phrasing helps her speech, and in the case of Brown Bear, her color knowledge. I point to the words. Although Ellie doesn't have concept of word yet, she will point randomly as she "reads." We have recently become fans of this fantastically interactive book, Arlo Needs Glasses.
Pretend play: We encourage a lot of pretend play with a toy grill, plenty of dress up clothes and dolls, and just giving examples. Ellie's current favorite pretend games are being an animal and pretending it's a birthday.
Art: Art projects are great for sensory play and fine motor skills. We love to paint with water on the sidewalk on warm days. We use an easel, we paint on big paper, we color on little paper…. we try to vary materials and surfaces as much as possible.
|Taking a walk with her art.|
Mostly, I try to put Ellie in a language-and-number rich environment, give her lots of visuals, and model over and over again. We take advantage of local events and resources such as free music class, visiting the bookstore to check out the books and toys, and running around outside, in addition to school-based therapies.
What activities do you love? Are there any areas of development you'd like to learn more about?