dinosaur books

Dinosaurs #KidsCoop

All about the Dinosaurs

Dinosaurs are always a popular area of interest but with the new Jurassic World film coming out this year I think that they are going to be more popular than ever. Dinosaurs are popular in our house – we had a dinosaur bedroom, a dinosaur party, played with the dinosaur in ice and even invited the dinosaurs to dinner!!

We have just had The Sensory Seeker’s annual review (as he has a Statement of Special Education Needs) and have discovered that he is now working at National Curriculum levels in Maths and Reading. This is fantastic news and we feel that he has benefited from all the extra support he receives. So I am pleased to share with you two books that Parragon have sent us to review on the subject of Dinosaurs.

Dinosaur Books

dinosaurs

Dino Supersaurus T-Rex Terror – The Supersaurus Legend Begins

Dino Supersaurus T-Rex Terror - The Supersaurus Legend BeginsThis is a beautifully illustrated book set in a cartoon strip. That’s lots of action and the pictures tell the story to help with the words. It really is a book for slightly older children but it was good to read with The Sensory Seeker picking out high frequency words I know he knows. Thus making it fun and rewarding for him. The only thing he found confusing was that the speech is written in capital letters – but it was good to explain to him about different types of text (not that I am sure he got it at his age).

£5.99 ISBN: 978- 1 -4723 – 6466 – 1

Gold Stars Travel Back Through Time to The Land of Dinosaurs

dinosaur booksThis book is fantastic and maintains interest for a long time. Again fantastically illustrated and filled with lots of facts and fun. The book has contents, glossary and index pages which I think are great in a children’s book. Through the book children learn all about dinosaurs in an enjoyable and interactive way with puzzles, mazes, colouring in, observations and much more. Every page is just bursting with life, and there’s so much to see, do and learn.

£7.99 ISBN: 978- 1 – 4723 – 5781 – 6

Find over 450 great dinosaur posts on my Dinosaur Pinterest Board

The Weekly Kids Co-Op


I was sent the 2 books free of charge from Parragon Books as part of their blogger programme. All words and opinions are my own.

Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder

Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder

Sleep and Sensory Processing DisorderSleep is possibly the most significant factor with our son’s Sensory Processing Disorder, and when I say sleep I mean lack of it. Have no fear that he has burnt off the calories he has eaten because he doesn’t eat much or keep still. In fact even when he is playing a computer game he is jumping up and down. At almost 6 he still cannot sleep throughout the night. The paediatrician told us that she thought if we could manage to get him to sleep better, then it would help all other things fall into place. We have now managed to establish a good bedtime routine so that he is able to fall asleep every night. The trouble The Sensory Seeker has is staying asleep.

Things to consider about Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder

What is keeping them awake? Is it the noise? The visuals? The tactile? This could be because of the lights (do they need a light on? Or is there some sunlight seeping in that is annoying them?), textures – are their pyjamas annoying them or are they not getting enough tactile input?), are they disturbed by noise of others? Or is it too quiet? Is it too hot or cold? Do they have enough pressure on them (from blankets) or too much? Is their pillow soft enough? Or too soft? Do they need a tidy environment or one with lots going on?

Things that can help with Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder Prior to Bedtime

Once you have established what it is keeping them awake you can try to work towards trying to resolve it. Think about all the things that happen in the run up to bedtime that affect their senses. Think about all the things that the individual with Sensory Processing Disorder requires and try to match those needs.

Developing a routine and a consistent way of doing things is helpful and can reduce the impact of over-reacting. Organisation can give the child a sense of control over their day. Avoid television or computer games an hour or two before bedtime and provide a quiet winding-down time, with a low-key story. We have a bath routine, which then follows brushing teeth, getting into pjs and a story. We did start with a short story and a song, as his attention has expanded we have been able to make this longer. As he has become more and more interested in things we have been able to engage him more easily too (such as with his current LEGO book). You could also try providing a snack that can provide slow-release nutrients through the night to avoid a drop in blood sugar.

Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder – The Environment

Think carefully about the environment you are trying to get them to sleep in, and again try to adapt it to their needs. If it is too noisy then would they sleep with ear plugs in? Could you reduce the noise (shutting the door, not flushing the toilet at night)? Is it the birds – is there a window open? If there’s not enough noise is it possible for them to sleep with a radio on? Can you adjust the temperature with central heating or blankets? Are they comfortable in the bed – the mattress/pillow/pjs/blankets – could you help them with a weighted blanket or by surrounding them with teddies? Tuck them into the bed with their blankets. Could you cut out light with blackout blinds, a thick curtain or an eye mask? Or how about one of those tunnels that goes over the bed. How is the room decorated – what colour are the walls – is there too much information on them, or not enough?

The Sensory Seeker and Sleep

he is disabledWe are finding that The Sensory Seeker does sleep much better than he used to but still wakes throughout the night. We have kept him in “night pants” at night because he still wets in the day, and is not ready to be dry at night. We have tried to leave him in pants (as he is aware that he is getting older and does not want to be a baby) but this was further disturbing his sleep, which I agree is further adding to his problems of concentration and so on the next day. We have tried him in his own room and he kept coming in to us. So now he is sharing with his brother (on the bottom bunk) but still he is unable to sleep throughout the night. I think the main factor is noise that disturbs him but cannot be sure.

Please if you have any further tips on Sleep and Sensory Processing Disorder then add them below.

Sensory Processing Disorder Bathtime Problems

Sensory Processing Disorder Bathtime Problems

Sensory Processing Disorder can be a problem when it affects day-to-day life, such as personal hygiene. Bathtime and keeping clean can be a problem but it is identifying exactly why, for each individual, in order to try to help it become more bearable. I have previously discussed teeth brushing and now to consider the whole bathtime experience.

Identifying the Sensory Needs at Bathtime

Sensory Processing Disorder Bathtime ProblemsFirst discover what it is that is bothering them. Keep a diary to determine whether your child is a seeker or avoider in the 7 sensory types. Note when things calm them down and when they arouse them. Try to note all the different things occurring. For example, if they do not like having their hair washed and are screaming, “get off me, get off me,” as if you are trying to kill them – don’t assume it is because they do not want the shampoo in their hair. There could be all manner of factors at work here. Bathtime may help calm them down, or rev them up. This may also depend on what their sensory diet (things they have done to satisfy their sensory needs and make sense of their environment) has been like that day, or whether it is morning or night. Even as a seeker bathtime may help calm them down (as they have got what they want) or it may overload them(as they are taking in too much). Make bathtime an hour before bed, as it  may help them calm down and establish a bedtime routine.

Think about the Environment at Bathtime in relation to Sensory Processing Disorder

Be aware of the environment at bathtime. Is there carpet on the floor? Or mats? The noise in the bathroom may echo, they may not like the sound of the running water. If the bath running is a problem then run it before hand, when they are out of ears reach. Invest in earplugs.Give them warning about what you are going to do and how it may upset them. Encourage singing and/or clapping to help regulate and be a distracting dose of sensory input; or put on some relaxing music. On the other hand, they may like the noise of the water, and a shower may provide more sounds.

Things to do for the individual with Sensory Processing Disorder in the build up to Bathtime

Before it is bathtime do activities that provide deep touch input, e.g. rest your hands on their shoulders and apply moderate pressure. The upset before getting in the bath could be to do with getting undressed – this could be to do with temperature or pressure. Make sure the room is the right temperature. Let them test the water with their fingers, to ascertain that it is the right temperature for their needs.  Again do deep pressure touch before washing, and wash with firm pressure (if they are seeking this), especially when shampooing and drying. Make the transition from getting undressed and into the bath as quick and smooth as possible. Make sure the towel and pjs are the right texture for them.

How to help the individual with Sensory Processing Disorder during Bathtime

During bathtime give them control. Let them chose the flannel, sponge or loofah – for size and texture.  If they don’t like being washed then encourage them to wash independently. Try letting them see what is happening in a mirror. Or tell them how long you will wash for – like until you have finished counting to ten. Offer a bubble mountain right before washing their face. If they do not like the water in their eyes have goggles – or a towel at hand so they can dry their eyes. After the bath rubbing lotion in may be effective. It may also be about the level of the water – do they want a deep bath – to cover them up, or do they only want a little bit – reassure them that it will not touch them too much.

Sensory Processing Disorder Bathtime ProblemsEncourage positive water experiences – make it fun and not rushed. For those who need the stimulation then why not let them have messy play. Take toys in that are their current interest, or ones that light up, and have different tactile stimuli. Take a doll that they can wash, whilst you wash them. Maybe consider making the bath glow in the dark,blow bubbles, or a product such as squishy baff. Consider the smell, how it appears visually, and the texture of the shampoo or soap. Or possibly dry shampoos. Those who need calming try epsom salts, benzonite clay baths, lavender oils & lavender soap, or natural (non-perfumed) soaps and shampoos. As you can see from the state of the soap are boy is a sensory seeker. Bars of soap are just no good for him, instead liquid is much better as he can get the sensory seeking tactile by rubbing it all over his body.

The ability to keep clean is a basic need. If someone you care for is finding it difficult then they may be entitled to financial help in the form of Disability Living Allowance (for the under 16s) or Personal Independence Payment (over 16s) to help manage this.

Pirate Captain Says Game

Pirate Captain Says Game

Pirate Captain Says Game

The Pirate Captain Says game is an adaptation of Simon Says. Players listen to the commands of someone who is not actually in the game. If they say “The Pirate Captain says” then players do the action of what has just been given. If the action is said without saying “The Pirate Captain says” first then they have to do a forfeit of star jumps (the number dependent on the ability of the player).

Pirate Captain Says GameWe chose to make a Pirates game to fit in with our trip to LEGOLAND Hotel Windsor, where we stayed in a Pirate room. It helped keep The Sensory Seeker focused and count down the days. The commands used were then all related to Pirates: Walk the plank, Scrub the decks, Climb the rigging, load the cannon, sailor’s salute. Some of the instructions none of my boys understood and had to be shown, but soon picked it up. The Sensory Seeker did very well and watched what his brothers did and copied.

Benefits of The Pirate Captain Says Game for The Sensory Seeker

The Pirate Captain Says game is good for The Sensory Seeker because it helps with his attention, gross motor skills, sense of body perception, noise, touch, attention, visual, build on vocabulary, social and just down right having fun! In fact next time I have told the boys that I will give them real brushes to “scrub the decks” – well they may as well clean the floor whilst they are down there! This would be a good game to transfer outside too. I really liked how it was suitable for my younger three boys bridging the gap between their ages and abilities.

Logan Osborne: Man with Autism Graduates with Masters Degree

Logan Osborne: Man with Autism Graduates with Masters Degree

It shouldn’t be a big deal that a man has graduated with a Masters degree but I am sure that anyone touched by autism will know how much of a battle it can be. Their little habits, rituals, anxieties and lack of health care and social skills make it all the more difficult for them.  Any parents would be proud that their child has a first degree, so to go on to gain a Masters is even more impressive. I have written previously about my oldest son who has Asperger’s Syndrome going to University and so it is really reassuring to hear of the success of Logan Osborne.

Logan Osborne Autistic Msc StudentLogan Osborne first gained a BSc(Hons) Geography at University of Brighton in 2013. Now he has an MSc in Geographical Information Systems and Environmental Management and is looking for a job in geographical information systems.

Logan’s parents want to give some comfort to others that with the right support anything can be achieved. They say that the University of Brighton’s Disability and Dyslexia team gave Logan excellent support. Logan said that he felt that he could always talk things over with them, including checking his work, if he needed help.

If you or your child is thinking of going to University and have a disability then it should be declared in order to obtain the right support.

The Disability and Dyslexia team at the University of Brighton provides one-to-one mentoring and specialist study support, advice and help with applying for funding. Contact: disability@brighton.ac.uk 01273 643799, and for more information go to: www.brighton.ac.uk/current-students/my-studies/declaring-a-disability-or-learning-difficulty

 

real life measuring

Real Life Measuring

One of the ways of helping bring Maths to life is by making your very own Skeleton. This exercise was beneficial to The Sensory Seeker because it was a very concrete activity. By that I mean he had a visual way of processing the information – as opposed to an abstract idea in his  head.

Real Life Measuring

real life measuringFirst we measured different things – our hands, a chair, the table. We measured them using our hands. We compared how different sized hands (mine Vs the children’s) needed a different number of them for the measurement of the different objects. We then moved onto tape measures (soft and hard), rulers etc and talked about cms and inches.

This was a fun way to introduce measuring and was much better at holding The Sensory Seeker’s Interest.

 

 

Measuring Yourself to Make a Life-Sized Skeleton

real life measuringreal life measuringThe following week we made a life sized skeleton. We did this by taking different measurements on the body and then drew the same size for each part on a piece of paper. We then cut it out and attached it together. It was good to demonstrate how something the size of The Sensory Seeker could be put together from the smaller parts. It also gave him a better understanding of his bone structure – as well as things like fine motor practice (drawing and cutting), number sequencing, attention, instructions etc. We used blue tac and a biro to make holes for the split pins.

I think it was also good for self-esteem as now we have a bony version of The Sensory Seeker proudly hanging on the back of our kitchen door. It also fits in very nicely with our Pirate theme – which really began when we spent the night in a Pirate room at Legoland Windsor.

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Proprioception – Sensory Processing Disorder: Body Position

What is Proprioception?

Our brains are very busy-bees. They receive a continuous flow of information from each of our 7 different sensory systems all day long, everyday- & the brain has to sort through it & prioritise the information to decide how to best understand what is going on & then decide what to do based on all of the information available. The sense Proprioception is that of body position, location, orientation, and movement. The information is received through receptors in muscles and joints – for example force, speed and control, about how and where we are moving in the space around us.  This is basically where each part of our body is in relation to others, and how much effort is required from each of the parts to get the desired movement. This can affect how we drink from a cup with control, throw a ball to hit a target, how to move our body to fit through 4 desks in a small space.

Proprioception - Sensory Processing Disorder: Body Position

Proprioception is probably the hardest area to really pin-point as a sensory processing issue. There’s lots of overlap with other skills (like motor planning) so the thinking part to do with making a plan about how you’re going to carry out a movement & going along with it.  Issues are to do with too much or too little information processed by our brains. Horse riding has been found to help with this sense, as swimming.

Proprioception - Sensory Processing Disorder: Body Position

Impairment of the proprioception sense is most reported at times of growth particularly during adolescence and is worse when the individual is tired.

The Sensory Seeker and Proprioception

We noticed with The Sensory Seeker that at preschool he was unable to pour something from one container to the other, as he was unable to understand the relationship between his body parts and the effort (when to stop) of when to pull back (from pouring). I think that him standing on his head/spinning etc is his way of trying to understand this – but this is my Mom theory and not based on anything scientific. We find plenty of time on the trampoline helps and taking things slowly when walking down stairs/slopes.

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Identifying Sensory Processing Disorder with Proprioception

TOO MUCH  – Can be seen by movements being stiff.

How we can help

•Have a ‘time out’ corner
•Provide slow rocking movements to help relieve muscle tension
•Allow breaks from movement activities

NOT ENOUGH

• Use way too much force with objects e.g. jerky when drinking from a cup, push really hard with glue
• Push or lean heavily against people or walls
• Might prefer tight clothing
• Toileting problems (e.g. lack of awareness of need to go)
• Drooling
• Spill from mouth when eating
• Might appear rough or aggressive, like ‘rough-housing’

How we can help
• Allow them to lean on something when sitting (compensating when already fatigued/ end of day)
• Sit on a therapy ball

Proprioception - Sensory Processing Disorder: Body Position

• Use heavy or weighted items to give more awareness about where their body is (e.g. heavy cups and spoons)
• Place something weighted on their lap while sitting e.g. bean-bag, back-pack over shoulders/ weighted products – lappad, jacket etc.
• Give them ‘heavy-work’ jobs- e.g. moving chairs, carrying books/ boxes of toys.

This is not a sponsored post.

Many thanks to the Children’s Occupational Therapy Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust for supply this information and granting me permission to use it.

The Sensory Seeker Progress

The Sensory Seeker Progress 5 years 10 Months

I thought I would do a progress post of how The Sensory Seeker is doing. He is currently 5 years and almost 10 months old.

The Sensory Seeker and Mornings

As long as the routine is there mornings seem to be going pretty well. Yes The Sensory Seeker  may need encouraging to eat his breakfast but generally this is happening (whether that be dry cereal, scrambled egg or he loves bacon). I even have managed to get him to have a drink of milk each day. There have been times when this has been more difficult, and at one point he just screamed and screamed. Looking back I am not sure if I was not fulfilling The Sensory Seeker’s Auditory sense.

The Sensory Seeker ProgressAlthough it was really difficult at the time I just tried to focus on the fact that it was The Sensory Seeker that wasn’t coping. That it would pass. I knew it was to do with lots of changes and possibly tiredness. Instead of punishing him for his behaviour we tried to make things easier for him (without spoiling). We relaxed our boundaries (such as a complete ban on computer games in the week) in return for behaviours we desired (such as eating all of his breakfast before school). Teeth brushing is going really well, which is a lot to do with our fairy and the fact that he has “big” teeth coming through.  He is also really enjoying playing with LEGO before school – which is great for his fine motor development, imaginative play, sharing and attention. I know at the end of the term he is getting more tired and less co-operative and so I do tend to just save the argument by getting him dressed myself. The Sensory Seeker loves scooting to school – which not only gets us there faster but is good for his gross motor, his proprioception and vestibular senses. I also have my own Microscooter* now to help me keep up with him and ensure that he is safe. Thank you to Microscooters for this kind donation.

The Sensory Seeker At School

The Sensory Seeker ProgressSchool seems to be going really well for The Sensory Seeker. I haven’t heard any concerns and he seems to be progressing at a good rate. He has got really independent at going into school and doing the things he needs to do (hanging up his coat, ticking what he wants for dinner) before slotting into playing alongside his peers. He has had a few toileting accidents (more so when there was a lot of change) but other than that I am really happy with how things are. The Sensory Seeker even seems to be trying now foods as he now has cooked dinners at school. It is good to hear him counting and reading particularly, as when he was hardly talking it was hard to imagine him ever doing these things. He doesn’t like his shirt tucked in or his buttons done up – so we are currently not forcing him to.

The Sensory Seeker After School

The Sensory Seeker ProgressThe Sensory Seeker now goes to Boys Brigade, Football club and ICT club (all with his older brother who is 7 years and 4 months): He seems to be coping well (again just toileting issues). He is able to play (mainly with LEGO) without supervision or needing things structured for him. At home The Sensory Seeker can be easily wound up – but think that’s more of a brothers thing. He is occasionally eating with his fork/spoon but mainly with his hands still. Currently we are still concentrating on the fact that he is eating, trying new foods and textures. The amount is small and we do have to barter with him a lot. Bedtimes he goes down pretty much without fuss in routine. Sometimes we relent and let him go to sleep in our bed. He is more and more ending up coming into our bed in the night and the one time he didn’t he had an awful nightmare that I had died. Other than that he’s got much better at not touching people after I have told him and even was easier to have his hair cut this time. The Sensory Seeker seems to have a much larger attention span that he used to and has developed his own interests. We recently took our Microscooters to the Forest of Dean to do the Gruffalo’s Child Trail again and he did really well with reading the words (as well as the scooting).

* I received a free Microscooter to promote the benefits of having an adult scooter on the school run. I was not specifically asked for this post but wanted to share how useful it is in this situation.

Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense Hearing

Auditory Sense

Sensory Processing – The Auditory Sense (Hearing)

Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense HearingWe receive lots of information through all of the seven senses. They tell us what we can hear, feel, see, smell, taste, which way up we are and movement. We then filter out which bits of information we need to make sense of things, and to tell us how to behave. Sometimes we all can struggle with which of the senses to filter out.  This post looks at the auditory sense (hearing). Think of it like when there is the noise of a tapping pen, or water dripping, and we are trying to concentrate on something/someone. We may even have to do something about it to make it stop. We may even get annoyed and SHOUT.

People with sensory integration disorder (or sensory processing disorder) have trouble registering and organising the information, making it difficult for them to learn and function in the World. For them it may not just be the noise of the pen or water but all the sounds in their immediate environment – no matter how loud or quiet. There are times when the child is over aroused and needs calming down, or maybe the child is too calm and needs arousing, and it is also normal to switch between the two.

The Sensory Seeker and The Auditory Sense

I do think that when The Sensory Seeker is upset, or I am thinking about his Sensory Diet, the auditory sense is the hardest one (for me) to remember. We first noticed that he did not like hand dryers, fireworks, motorbikes, the vacuum cleaner, or even his brother talking could really irritate him. He would cover his ears in real pain and sometimes cry out too. Other times he really likes a lot of noise, and will make up little sounds to calm himself, or be very loud.

Auditory Hypersensitivity –  TOO MUCH

Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense Hearing• Distressed by sudden or loud noises
• Distressed by sounds that don’t bother others (e.g. phone ringing)
• Cannot focus/ complete a task when there is background sound
• Scared of appliances like lawn-mower outside, blender
• Seek out quiet areas
• Hear sirens, aeroplanes, cars driving past before anyone else
• Vocalise loud/ constant noises (to block out other noises or sounds)
• Might be scared of, or avoid hand-dryers or toilets
 What we can do to help
• Warn them when possible if there is going to be a loud noise.
• LABEL the source of the sound e.g. “Johnny does that sound feel loud to your ears? It is the lawn-mower.”
• Give the option of a ‘time out/ quiet corner’ if there is going to be e.g. loud music. My son likes the book corner.
• Give them somewhere quiet to eat their lunch.
• Seat the child away from the door.
• Use fan or background noise to muffle loud/ unexpected sounds.
• Teach the child to hum to block out noise.
• Provide personal ear phones where possible.
Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense Hearing• Give them control – like using the vaccuum cleaner.
• Start slowly -Let them help with noisy appliances whilst they are not noisy (like unloading the washing machine), then put the machine on whilst you are with them and warn them about the sounds – maybe start with ear defenders/covering their ears, and slowly build up to them being in front of the machine on their own.
• If they have made an association that something makes a loud sound they don’t like – such as a balloon bursting – then try to get them to play with them, and show them that no harm will come to them.

Auditory Hypo-sensitivity – NOT ENOUGH

Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense Hearing• Seek out all the toys on the mat that make the most noise.
• Constantly vocalising loudly
• Talk louder than other people
• Like to make a lot of noise (e.g. banging on the table)
• Crave/ respond positively during or after loud music
• Enjoy strange or certain sounds
• Might float aimlessly & not follow your verbal instructions
• Not respond when you verbally tell them instructions
• Appear to ignore others voices
What we can do to help
• Use hand gestures to help get your message across
• Touch them firmly to get their attention before speaking/ giving instructions
• Allow time for noisy play (we have a noisy toy box)
• Where possible- use learning through sound/ music
• Provide lively music in the background during e.g. bathing, getting dressed etc.
• Use extra visual supports- e.g. visual schedule, social story, stand in one place when giving instructions

Sensory Processing Disorder Auditory Sense HearingCalming

  • Consistency in noise levels
  • Quiet calm and well paced voices
  • Consistent rhythms

Arousing

  • Variations in noise levels
  • Erratic, loud or screaming voices
  • Variations in rhythms eg. fast and slow music combined
  • Sudden unexpected noises
 
Many thanks to the Children’s Occupational Therapy Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust for supply this information and granting me permission to use it.
Down's Syndrome - I love you Natty

Down’s Syndrome – I love you Natty #Review

Down's Syndrome - I love you NattyWhen you have your first baby there is a lot to learn. You have so many choices to make long before the breast/bottle, cot/co-sleeping, and which pushchair to get ones. From the very first moment you think you are pregnant there is decisions to make – will you tell anyone before taking the test, will someone be with you when you take the test, and so on. One of the big decisions is to whether you want to have the test discover the chance of your baby having Down’s Syndrome or Trisomy 21.

Why my babies were not tested for Down’s Syndrome/Trisomy 21

Down's Syndrome - I love you NattyI decided that I did not want any of my children to be tested because to me it did not matter what the chance was whether they had Down’s Syndrome or not as I felt it wouldn’t change anything. I certainly did not want to be asked the question if that meant I would abort my unborn child – as the answer (for me) would have always been no. A child with a disability is no less of a person than anyone else. And just because some things about them may make their lives more complicated so do they have qualities that others do not have.

I Love You Natty

Down's Syndrome - I love you NattyIf I am honest I have been putting off this post because I just do not have the words to give it justice. You see I wanted to share with you all how lucky I am to know Hayley Goleniowska from Downs Side Up. She is such an amazing woman and has done so much to help change perceptions of Down’s Syndrome. Please do check out her award-winning blog. One of the many, many things she has done is to produce a book with her nine year old daughter Mia. It is such a beautiful book introducing to a child (by a child) what it is like when their sibling is born with Down’s Syndrome. It is clear to see the bond between the sisters and the book is very heartfelt throughout. I love the part where she explains that her sister has an extra chromosome and says, “It is just a part of who she is, like we both have brown eyes.”

The family have very kindly let us into their lives in order to help others: Including using family photos, as well as their thoughts and feelings. I love how we can see that having Trisomy 21 does not mean the end of life, or having fun – and this shines through in this book.

 I received a free book just because Hayley is so lovely and said I did not even have to tell you about it. Please tell everyone you know about this book!