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Posted by Lavon on April 17, 2000 at 21:54:32:

In Reply to: New girl in school posted by Laura on April 17, 2000 at 17:58:56:

Hi Laura,
I think it is wonderful of you to take the time to ask how you can help. I have a daughter with DS who is in the first grade. It is difficult to try to explain exactly what DS is to anyone
especially another child. What I have done with other kids and including my sons friends is to just say that Down Syndrome is something that happens when the baby is in your belly and that
it means that they will just do things a little slower than most kids. There is really nothing that a child with Downs can't do, but it may just take them longer. Being a friend and helping them out
is a wonderful thing to do. Sometimes at the age of 6 it isn't even necessary to go into a huge explaination because kids aren't able to process it yet.
Even at age 7, my son still thinks that his sister having Downs is it means she can bend her whole body forward flat on the floor without bending her legs
and lay her torso between her legs. He thinks that is so cool.
Your daughter could have a friend for life if she just takes the time to get to know and understand her new classmate.
Good Luck and have a great day!

: My 1st grade daughter just started in a new school. Often during the week she will report on the activity of one particular child in the room: this girl acts up, gets LOTS of attention and special care, etc. Turns out this girl has ds.

: I have explained this girl is special, that she is the way she is because God made her that way, something like having green eyes or curly hair.

: I think my analysis is weak. I would appreicate hearing how others would explain ds to a 6 year old.
: Also, how best my daughter can befriend this girl, considering the child's unique needs and abilities.

: Thank you!

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