Down Syndrome Teaching Resources to Help You Support Your Homeschooler with Down Syndrome
Disclaimer: Throughout this series, we will be using the diagnostic language and terms that most people who are searching the Internet will use to find information. We fully understand that using any term to categorize children may result in generalizations that may not apply to every child, stigmas associated with that term, and the possibility of overlooking the many beautiful positive traits that exist when we look at the whole child. We celebrate the differences that make us unique individuals and learners, and we write everything in this series with the hopes of benefiting all children and their families. Resources are provided as options for you, may not represent the views and opinions of A2Z Homeschooling, and in no way are meant to replace medical or other professional advice.
If you are homeschooling a child with Down syndrome, you probably spend a lot of time seeking information and resources. You are likely hungry for Down syndrome teaching strategies and may be constantly on the lookout for tips for teaching a child with Down syndrome. We completely understand and hope that we can save you time and effort by sharing some Down syndrome teaching resources with you. Explore what is here, and you decide if the resources and information will work for your family:
|Homeschool Curriculum for Down Syndrome||Down Syndrome Homeschool Supplemental Resources|
|Down Syndrome Homeschool Programs||Free Down Syndrome Homeschool Resources|
*This post contains affiliate links. Things you buy through our links may earn us a commission. Although most of the resources listed here are free, those marked with a $ have a cost or require a fee/subscription in order to access the full range of materials.
Homeschool Curriculum for Down Syndrome
Teaching kids with Down syndrome has the potential to be extremely rewarding—especially when that kid is your own child. You need to start, though, with a good curriculum, and choosing a homeschool curriculum can be overwhelming. You not only want a quality curriculum that fits your needs and budget, but you also have to make sure that that same curriculum can help your child with Down syndrome be successful. Although many homeschool curriculums can be modified for your child with Down syndrome, there are also some that have features that will be important for your family. Here are some resources to help you in your search for curriculum:
Math Curriculum for Kids with Down Syndrome | Hand in Hand Education
Take a look at Hand in Hand’s guidance on math curriculum options for homeschooling with Down syndrome.
Reading Curriculum for Kids with Down Syndrome | Hand in Hand Education
Hand in Hand Education also provides advice and suggestions for reading curriculum options when you are homeschooling a child with Down syndrome.
Note: Some curriculum reviewed in this video is faith-based curriculum.
Time4Learning Online Education for Students with Down Syndrome $
Find out how using a computer-based curriculum can help your child with Down syndrome learn. Discover how Time4Learning’s student-paced, interactive instruction with multisensory feedback can motivate students to improve language skills while learning ELA, math, science, and social studies.
Down Syndrome Homeschool Supplemental Resources
Sometimes you need resources in addition to your curriculum. Here are some supplemental Down syndrome teaching resources that can help you—as the homeschool teacher—or that can be used directly with your child with Down syndrome:
Fine Motor Skills for Children with Down Syndrome: A Guide for Parents and Professionals $
By Maryyanne Bruni (Author)
“The author, an occupational therapist and parent of an adult with Down syndrome, describes how the characteristics of Down syndrome can impact the acquisition and progression of fine motor skills. She presents a thorough overview of the building blocks of fine motor development, from infancy through to adulthood…. Throughout the book, the author suggests ways to incorporate fine motor skill development opportunities into as many day-to-day activities as possible, recognizing how impractical it is to constantly be in therapy mode with a child.”
See and Learn Resources | Down Syndrome Education International $
These resources are specifically designed to teach language and math skills to children with Down syndrome: See and Learn Speech, See and Learn Language and Reading, See and Learn Numbers, and Reading and Language Intervention (RLI) for Children with Down Syndrome. You can also find information through publications and videos on this site.
Stars of Success: Understanding How Children with Down Syndrome Learn $
By Susan J. Peoples (Author)
“Stars of Success: Understanding How Children with Down Syndrome Learn is the only text available offering regular classroom and special educators, as well as parents, a succinct identification and discussion of the specific learning needs characteristic of children with Down syndrome and other intellectual disabilities. Approved by the NDSS, the text provides proven and effective instructional techniques for parents and professionals…. Stars of Success is the first book to integrate current research and information regarding the learning needs and processes of educationally challenged children into a single reference.”
Teaching Children with Down Syndrome about Their Bodies, Boundaries, and Sexuality $
By Terri Couwenhoven (Author)
“Drawing on her unique background as both a sexual educator and mother of a child with Down syndrome, the author blends factual information and practical ideas for teaching children with Down syndrome about their bodies, puberty, and sexuality. This book gives parents the confidence to speak comfortably about these sometimes difficult subjects. In an easy-to-read, non-clinical style, the book covers relevant issues and concerns for children of all ages.”
Teaching Reading to Children with Down Syndrome: A Guide for Parents and Teachers $
By Patricia Logan Oelwein (Author)
“Teach your child to read using the author’s nationally recognized, proven method. From introducing the alphabet to writing and spelling, the lessons are easy to follow. The many pictures and flash cards included appeal to visual learners and are easy to photocopy!”
Teaching Math to People with Down Syndrome and Other Hands-On Learners: Basic Survival Skills (Book 1) $
By DeAnna Horstmeier (Author)
“The author, an experienced educator, was inspired to write Teaching Math to meet the needs of hands-on learners after observing the difficulty her adult son with Down Syndrome and his peers had in applying math skills to everyday life. Teaching Math gives parents and teachers high-interest, hands-on strategies and ideas for teaching math to learners of all ages.”
Teaching Math to People with Down Syndrome and Other Hands-On Learners: Advanced Survival Skills (Book 2) $
By DeAnna Horstmeier (Author)
“Just like Book 1, the follow-up book focuses on survival math–computations and concepts that relate to everyday life and being as independent as possible. Book 2 reviews some of the basics but mostly focuses on more challenging skills that are usually taught in upper elementary, middle school and beyond,” such as multiplication and division, fractions, measurement, money, and decimals.
Down Syndrome Homeschool Programs
As a homeschooler, you may do a lot on your own, but sometimes you want or need additional support. You can enroll your child in a program specifically designed for students with Down syndrome, or you may just need some consulting to get your homeschool on the right track. Here are some programs that can help, but be sure to do your research to see if an individual program is a good fit:
Down Syndrome Education International $
As a parent, you can find “expert, evidence-based advice and guidance on early intervention and education for children with Down syndrome.” Although not specifically for homeschoolers, you may find the online courses and consulting services beneficial to your homeschool.
Hand in Hand Education $
Looking for a one-time consultation as you begin homeschooling your child with Down syndrome? Alessa Giampaolo Kenner, M.Ed., is available to help you talk through issues like resolving concerns about homeschooling, finding curriculum to match your child’s strengths and challenges, and translating an IEP into your homeschool action plan.
The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential $
“Parents from around the world have helped their children with Down syndrome move along the path to wellness. Using the programs developed by The Institutes, children diagnosed with Down syndrome have been able to improve function and, in many cases, perform at peer level-and above.” The Institutes take a detailed history and evaluation of your child before designing a home treatment program. Courses for parents are also available, so you can learn how to best support your child with Down syndrome at home.
Free Down Syndrome Homeschool Resources
While you may need to pay for some Down syndrome teaching resources, sometimes the best resources are free. Here are some sites where you can find free educational resources for teaching your child with Down syndrome:
Daniel’s Music Virtual Community
Does your child love music? Daniel’s Music Foundation is a non-profit organization designed “to empower individuals with developmental and physical disabilities through music.” The virtual community includes DMF On-Demand (free videos to get your child moving and experiencing music), live events (like virtual dance parties and open mic nights), and virtual private lessons (for a fee).
Gigi’s at Home | Gigi’s Playhouse
You can stay connected with Gigi’s Playhouse and its free programming virtually! Join over 28 live scheduled programs offered each week through Gigi’s at Home Live or access over 220 program recordings, lesson plans, and activities virtually whenever you can through Gigi’s at Home On Demand.
Homeschooling Down Syndrome | Pinterest
This is a collection of homeschooling ideas for children with Down Syndrome created by SPED Homeschool.
Learn at Home | Down Syndrome Resource Foundation
This is an extensive collection of learn-from-home exercises and suggestions to empower you. Using these suggestions, you can help your child with Down syndrome build essential skills.
Skill Development Resources | National Association for Down Syndrome
This is a great list of resources for building motor skills, communication skills, and alternative communication systems (sign language, visual systems, augmentative and alternative communication), as well as academic skills like reading and math.
Have advice about homeschool curriculum for Down syndrome or know of other teaching strategies for students with Down syndrome? Please share your comments below….