World Down Syndrome Day from the eyes of First Graders

“Why are we wearing crazy socks today for World Down Syndrome Day?” was the question posed to a group of 21, our lucky number, first graders. Several hands shot up but the girl who answered the question said, “So people with Down syndrome can know we’re celebrating them.” It was an unexpected answer but so true! I was looking for the answer of how socks resemble chromosomes, but these students were focused on celebrating the people they know.  

We talked about some of the common characteristics of Down syndrome such as low muscle tone and these cheerful 6 and 7 yr olds focused on everything they had in common. I said, “The muscles in their hands work a little differently than ours so sometimes it helps if they use bigger things to write with like a marker instead of a pencil”. One student replied, “I need lots of practice writing too!” I was prepared to go into this class with lots of information of how people with Down syndrome are more like us than different and as it turned out, they already knew that!  

 Thank you to Ms Tcholakian’s 1st grade class for inviting me into the room on World Down Syndrome Day and for being such amazing students! Thank you to all the schools who celebrated World Down Syndrome Day! If you are part of a school or business that would like to celebrate our inspiring individuals with Down syndrome we have lots of ideas how you can get involved. Please contact our Playhouse by emailing detroit@gigisplayhouse.org 

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