Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Just Like You

I know this has made the Facebook/blog rounds a few times already in recent weeks, but I only just yesterday finally had the chance to view it.  Beautifully, beautifully done, a little uncomfortable when discussing some of the issues people with Down syndrome can have (especially when they're spoken about by their "typical" friends - hugging, memory issues, leaving the gen-ed class for resource time, sleepiness?), brought tears to my eyes.

I wish there was some way I could reach each and every person on the planet without the connection to someone with Down syndrome and have them watch this - it should be compulsory in schools for students and teachers alike.

Have any of you ever had luck in introducing something like this into your child's school's mandatory viewing?  Morning video?  Assembly?  Have any of you approached your child's school with this video?  Do you plan to?  Are schools even allowed to do that?  Have you shown this to your child with Down syndrome?  If so, what did they think?  Was this before or after you began talking to them about Down syndrome? 

I've been talking to Samantha more and more about it lately, and think this may be on the view-list pretty soon.  Self-awareness was one of my biggest questions when she was born - would she ever recognize that she was different?  Would she understand what Down syndrome is?  I know with absolute certainty that she will, and I'd like to raise her own self-awareness before someone else beats me to it.

If you are reading this and not connected to the Down syndrome community (other than by association with us!), would you please consider sharing this video in some way?  The more people who can view this the better, helping to enrich the lives and social interactions of people with Down syndrome, of all ages, everywhere.



13 comments:

Holly said...

Beautiful! I hope that we can all be more accepting of others no matter the challengs they face in their lives. I am so thankful that at our house we strive to see the inside of who people are.

Deanna said...

I'd seen this video floating around, but I didn't take the time to watch it until now. So amazing and beautiful. I think I might have to do a blog post about this myself...

Teleia21 said...

Your blog is beautiful! I am going to be stuck reading it for days! I am proud that Jack is in school with such a beautiful girl like Sammi and gets to sit next to her and help her. He calls her his friend which makes me sooo happy. Thank you for sharing your blog with me! I look forward to reading it daily!

Anna Theurer said...

Becca, thank you for posting this! I must live in a rock because I never saw this video until your blog post. I hope that you do not mind if I also do a blog post on this. . . spreading the word!

Anonymous said...

I've see the youtube of this but not the whole production. Does the finished product include a relationship between a peer and a student with DS who has limited communication skills?

Yo Mamma Mamma! said...

Violette has watched the video with me. About 5 minutes in she turned around to me with a big big proud grin on her face and said "Mommy, I 'ave Down syndrome like them!" While she knows she has Down syndrome, I think it was such a great way to explain it to HER. My 13 year old loved it too and thinks that it should be shown at her school. Finally, it sparked a really good conversation with my 7 year old about the R-word. What a gift this move is to everyone who sees it!!

Amy Allison said...

Thanks for sharing Rebecca! We have had school districts across the US agree to show it in all school assemblies and some have ordered the DVD so they can own it. We have had requests to translate the film into Spanish, Italian and Portugese already!

I have shown the film at several schools, at civic organizations and at DSG meetings. There are many applications so we are excited to watch the film take off and touch lives around the world. Be sure to go like the Just Like You Down Syndrome facebook page and visit the Just Like You website to follow along as we develop more materials and track the impact. http://www.justlikeyou-downsyndrome.org/.

PS- parents might consider purchasing a copy of the DVD to give to their school as a gift for the holidays! You can purchase online here: https://secure.kcdsg.org/order-just-like-you.php

Becca said...

And to Anonymous, above, here's Amy Allison's response:

"YouTube version that is 13 minutes long is the full version. We did not have anyone apply to our casting call that used AAC or PECS and a majority of people with DS can speak (varied intelligibility of course) so we feel the product is a good representation of people with DS overall. It also covers what to do if you cannot understand someone with DS (ask them show you what they are talking about, ask an adult for help). Hope that helps."

Jenny said...

It is very beautifully done, I loved it when I first saw it too :)

Vicki said...

Thank you for sharing! I shared with my local DS support group. Would be so great to get into the schools. Love the idea of buying it as a gift for a school.

DaisyBee said...

I've just wept all the way through this, will share with my student midwife cohort as we recently did a lecture on disability and DS was touched upon.

Melissa said...

I *still* need to watch this. I've got a meeting at Claire's school this afternoon and will be sharing the link with them.

Marla, Special and Determined said...

I have the video and plan to show it to my son's Kindergarten class. See my son was diagnosed with Down syndrome and he is in an inclusive classroom, so I thought I would show parts of the dvd to help bring awareness and so that the children will feel more comfortable with him. They for the most part are really good, but I know they have questions, and I want to be there for them to ask them.