Home Environment And Family Upbringing Affect A Child With Downs Syndrome's Development

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Home Environment and Family Upbringing Affect a Child with Downs Syndrome’s Development?
Victoria Alexander
University of Illinois at Springfield

Home Environment and Family Upbringing Affect a Child with Down Syndrome’s Development?
With today’s age of marriage increasing from the early twenties to late twenties and even early thirties according to The New York Times Company (2010), more and more families are starting late in life. This means that women are waiting longer to have children; and also that there are more and more children being born with cognitive defects as stated in an article from the website Grace n Glamour (2009). One of these cognitive defects that is common today is Downs Syndrome. There are many levels of Downs Syndrome. As the organization Bupa (2010) states, some who have this disorder are very high functioning and have high levels of cognitive development; others are far from independent and possess learning disabilities and functioning delays. In a study by Byrne, Macdonald, and Buckley (2002) the hypothesis examined the relationship between reading and language development with memory retention. The authors of this study stated that reading comprehension would help develop language and memory development. The article really talks about how children with Down syndrome are just now being able to be mainstreamed into society. This leads to the development of accurate studies for the development of their cognitive skills such as reading and language, and also the retention of each. Results for this study were inconclusive due to different reasons. One reason is that the level of cognitive delay in children with Down syndrome varies significantly. Another reason the study may be flawed is because the children with Down syndrome are very commonly placed in lower grades. The study touches on the fact that the children being studied are held back due to their delays and are in school with children younger than themselves. This would show a significant difference in the study. The results of this study could not support the hypothesis because the only true collection of data they got from their experiment was that children with Down syndrome could read single words. They could not go any further to support the hypothesis (Byrne et al., 2002). For the current study, the information from this article will be used to try and find a reason for the differences in cognitive levels and delays in children with Down syndrome. Another article used a longitudinal study was used on children with Down syndrome who were enrolled in an early preparation course (Hauser-Cram et al., 1999). The hypothesis of the study predicted that a child coming from a family with good dynamics, specifically positive interactions with the mother would have a higher rate of social functioning growth. The study was conducted four different times throughout the program and until the child was five years old. Researchers looked at both the mother and the child in each assessment. The results of the study showed that children with a higher level of positive family environment had a faster rate of progression with communication and social development skills (Hauser-Cram et al., 1999). This article will be used in the current study for a guideline of participant gathering and also for background and support in the current hypothesis. The information and results of this study lead to the furthering of study in the current study. Another experiment was a comparison between families with infants who had Down syndrome, and families who had children without Down syndrome (Barrera, Watson, & Adelstein, 1987). The process began with a home evaluation and then the families were to take part in an early intervention program. Assessments were conducted at around four months of age, and at two years of age. The researchers used the Bayley scales of development to