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Fine Motor Skills for Children with Down Syndrome

A popular book now available in a completely revised third edition. 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: Early arm and hand control. Stability; Bilateral coordination; Sensation; Dexterity. Use the book's step-by-step activities to build daily living skills for home and school: Scissor skills; Pencil grasp development; Pre-printing, printing & cursive writing; Keyboard skills; Computer & tablet skills; Dressing, grooming, and feeding skills. Throughout the book, the author suggests ways to incorporate fine motor skill development opportunities into as many day-to-day activities as possible, recognising how impractical it is to constantly be in "therapy" mode with a child. Suggestions for gift ideas are offered in "Grandma's and Grandpa's list" at the end of each chapter. With expanded and updated information on fine motor skills and computer and personal electronic device use, keyboarding skills, postural support, sensory processing, and the adult years, readers will have at their fingertips a cornucopia of information and guidance to support the fine motor development of children and adults.
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About the Author

Maryanne Bruni has worked for 35 years as a registered occupational therapist, mainly in pediatric settings. She is now volunteer Board President of West Toronto KEYS to Inclusion, a non-profit organization promoting inclusive opportunities for adults with intellectual disabilities. She lives with her husband and youngest daughter, who has Down syndrome, in Toronto.


In this revised edition of the 2006 publication, veteran occupational therapist and mother of a daughter with Down syndrome Bruni offers a comprehensive guide to developing fine motor skills (FMS) that lead to independent living. Designed to be motivating, realistic, and practical, her breakdown of cultivating sensory processing and FMS uses materials and routines that are available at home and to any professional working with the child. Likening FMS to the construction of a house, Bruni lays a foundation of stability (strength and balance), bilateral coordination (holding a bowl with one hand while stirring with the other), sensation (an awareness of fingers, hands, and arms), and sensory processing (transforming and integrating information from the senses) as the building blocks of achieving long-term self-sufficiency. VERDICT Complete with sidebars, illustrations, adaptive techniques (using a hairband for pencil stability), and profiles of learners, this title is a required acquisition for all consumer health collections. - Library Journal (*starred review), May 15, 2016 This book continues to offer fine motor activities that can be wrapped into daily life starting in infancy. This practical guide leads people with Down syndrome on a path toward self-sufficiency as they learn daily living and academic skills. Moreover, this expanded edition incorporates strategies for using tablet devices and touch screen technology to cultivate necessary skills in the modern world." - Stephanie Meredith, coauthor of Diagnosis to Delivery: A Pregnant Mother's Guide to Down Syndrome and other titles "Informed by decades of experience, Maryanne Bruni breaks down the components of fine motor development into practical increments so that persons with Down syndrome can maximize their potential at each stage of life. Parents, teachers, and therapists should be sure to have a copy nearby!" - Dr. Brian Skotko, Co-Director, Massachusetts General Hospital Down Syndrome Program "Critique: Simply stated, Fine Motor Skills for Children with Down Syndrome: A Guide for Parents and Professionals should be read by anyone with caregiver or instructional responsibilities for a Down Syndrome child. Enhanced with the inclusion of Visual Motor Worksheets; a useful article on 'Don't Throw It Out! Household Items to Use for Hand Play'; a Glossary, a Bibliography; a list of Resources, and an Index, "Fine Motor Skills for Children with Down Syndrome" should be considered an essential, cored addition to personal, professional, community, and academic library Down Syndrome instructional reference collections." - Reviewer's Bookwatch (Midwest Book Review), April 2016

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