Whole Child Reading

A Quick-Start Guide to Teaching Students with Down Syndrome and Other Developmental Delays

Whole Child Reading, A quick-start guide to teaching students with down syndrome and other developmental delays by Natalie Hale.Written for today’s incredibly busy parents and teachers, this small, reader-friendly guide explains how to “Go in through the heart and teach to the brain.”

Whole Child Reading - Table of Contents

“I think your book is miraculous. If I could give it 10,000 stars, I would. It’s a roadmap, and makes everything so simple. I’ve given it to all of my son’s teachers, and my family as well…my (typical) grandchildren are learning to read by this book!”-J.H., NE

“As a teacher I am committed to teaching all my students to read, as this will absolutely provide them a much higher quality of life as adults. I read this book in a day. It is an easy read and shows you how to teach our kids to read . The author provides research to back up her methods. I purchased one of her emergent books in late November and every single student of mine could read that book before Christmas break!! This is a must read for all Elementary teachers and all levels of Special education teachers. The book is also written for parents!” A.C. on Amazon

“I can’t believe this book isn’t more well-known. I have a child with severe cognitive delays, and found this book quite randomly while looking for another book…It is mercifully short and to the point. The author has a wealth of tips that would help any child. One of the main methods is to create printable books especially for the learner based on what they are interested in. Another is to create your own flashcards based on words that are of high-interest to the child. Brilliant! Things are so much easier to learn when you actually care about it.”–A.K. on Amazon

So how do we “go in through the heart?” We hook beginning and struggling readers with high-interest, individualized materials. Books about them. Lotto/Matching games about them. Our goal is to teach reading for meaning. We don’t want to produce “reading machines” who can’t comprehend what they just read. And it helps if “real” books used to teach are also hilarious, which is where Special Reads Reading Bundles come in handy; parents and educators get a break…they don’t have to create everything themselves!

And how do we “teach to the brain?” This book teaches you the basics which make a world of difference to the emerging reader. We use a brain-friendly format that’s easily “seen” and retained. We use simple strategies based on research about how our children with developmental delays learn most easily and naturally.

The methods in the book can be adapted for learners of any age who are reading at a third grade level or below. Special sections are included on teaching children who are nonverbal, learners who have the dual diagnosis of Down syndrome/autism, as well as sections on comprehension, fluency, and “Errorless Testing.”

No teaching experience is necessary, and you can easily work the reading activities described in Whole Child Reading into your child’s routine at home. If you have at least five minutes a day to spend on reading, you have enough time to get started!

“This book came highly recommended to me from some fellow moms of kids with Down Syndrome. The book is great! It is so easy to read and gets straight to the point. I followed all of the instructions on how to create a personal book and teach my daughter. It was very easy for me. Three weeks in, she is reading the book! It’s amazing! I can’t wait to make more books!”–E.N. on Amazon