Down Syndrome: An Intellectual and Developmental Disability Essay

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While completing a course on children with exceptionalities we used the textbook “Educating Exceptional Children”. While this textbook covered a variety of exceptionalities, I chose to research one further, Down syndrome. It is one of the most common and easily identified exceptionality and based on the higher prevalence of Down syndrome about 1 in 733 births ("About Down Syndrome") I believe that this may be one of the exceptionality I will have an increased chance of encountering during my teaching career.

Identifying Down syndrome

Down syndrome is a genetic condition which can cause intellectual and developmental disabilities. Persons affected with Down syndrome have the common will have an additional chromosome; instead of 46, they
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Typically, those affected with Down syndrome will develop behind those peers without this chromosomal abnormality (“Down Syndrome”).
Early Intervention
While nothing done before or during a pregnancy can cause Down syndrome a diagnosis can be available as early as pregnancy. An amniocentesis (thin needle inserted through the mother’s abdomen into the placenta) performed by a medical professional can easily identify the chromosomal abnormality or after birth with a simple blood test performed on the newborn. The earlier a diagnosis is made, the earlier parents can begin processing and using all the available resources to educate themselves on raising a child with Down syndrome. Parents will be able to gain the knowledge needed so that their child can receive the appropriate therapy and participate in activities that have been designed especially for this exceptionality, activities, which are geared to expand cognitive, social, emotional, and intellectual capacity.

Educational, Social and Cognitive Development: Intellectual Capacity
Cognitive development is defined as how a child learns and processes information. (“What is Cognitive Development”). Cognitively, children with Down syndrome tend to learn and show progress at a slower rate than their peers and not all areas of development will be equally affected. Because children with Down syndrome tend to experience delays in learning to talk and expressing
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