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"Love - a wildly misunderstood although highly desirable malfunction of the heart which weakens the brain, causes eyes to sparkle, cheeks to glow, blood pressure to rise and the lips to pucker."--Unknown.

"I learned long ago that being Lewis Carrol was infinitely more exciting than being Alice."--Joyce Carol Oates

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Monday, June 12, 2006

Life with Downies...

One of my guys in summer school has Down's Syndrome.

Michael is a very sweet boy who loves Barney, Blues Clues, balls and slides.

Michael can not speak.

Several years ago his mother began to sign with him.

Several years ago I received a degree in communication disorders and learned to sign.

How cool. The one child on campus who signs ended up in the classroom with the one summer school teacher who signs.

Michael and I are becoming fast friends. Today, we sang our ABCs. We ALL sang our ABCs...even Michael.

Some days are all glitter, even without the coffee.

Victoria and Me
A very cool site with even cooler photography.

Summer's Page
The amazing and harrowing story of a family who learns of their daughter's down's syndrome minutes after her birth. Chronicles her life through the age of two. Very moving.


7 touched me

Blogger Megan Frampton pondered...

What you describe is why I've always had a secret yearning to become a teacher.

I'm glad you and Michael are sharing the summer.

6/12/2006 09:48:00 PM  
Blogger ames pondered...

That's great that Michael and you get to learn from each other this summer.

My mother and I always wanted to learn ASL because my mom is going deaf. When I was younger, she only wore one hearing aid, now she has two. We'll take a class...or my aunt will teach us. Eventually.

6/12/2006 11:53:00 PM  
Blogger CindyS pondered...

I learned only basic sign language from a friend but I think some of the letters she taught me are different from those shown. I have never used it or met a deaf person but I am glad that I know a little.

I was at a hotel with my hubby on a business trip which meant I could meander where ever I wanted. I was sitting in the lobby reading when I noticed that although there was no talking, there was a lot of swooshing sounds. I looked up and it was a convention for a deaf group. It was spring so as they signed their coats were swishing. It was one of those rare moments that you're happy you get to experience.

I'm glad that you are enjoying summer school so much!

6/13/2006 03:42:00 AM  
Blogger Tara Marie pondered...

How wonderful you two found each other. It sounds like a wonderful experience.

I learned the sign language alphabet in grade school when I did a report on Helen Keller. A girl friend and I used it to communicate so we wouldn't get caught "talking" during class.

6/13/2006 10:41:00 AM  
Blogger Fickle Fiona pondered...

Thanks Megan! Glad to see you are still hanging around. ;-)

There are some good videos out there also Ames.

Cindy...the ASL version is varied from what most people learn in school. Thanks for the great story.

LOL Tara...done that myself too!

Thanks for all the happy thoughts!


6/13/2006 08:48:00 PM  
Blogger Holly pondered...

I got all teary eyed when I read this.

A very good friend of mine has a daughter with downs and seeing their struggles and rewards has had an amazing impact on my life.

I remember most of the alphabet, too, but that's it. You know, my kids' school teaches sign language for those who are interested, as an additional language. Isn't that neat?

6/15/2006 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger Fickle Fiona pondered...

Holly, I wish that schools would recognize ASL as a language and offer it with Spanish and French. ASL is no longer just for the deaf and has really opened up an entire world of communication to handicapped children.

I got called into the pre-school class today to help the teacher (got busted signing in the lunchroom). She had 3...count them 3...kids who were signing and wanted some help with basic signs.

Here is nice link to an ASL dictionary with good pics and some live streams for signs.



6/15/2006 06:42:00 PM  

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