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A Project of His Own
A Project of His Own

Daniel Brunk is a 12-year-old boy who has Down syndrome. He has a love of knowing people and remembers names better than most adults. He loves to read about famous Americans, knows the names of all the US presidents and has a set of community worker picture cards that he really enjoys. His only predicament was that he wanted more workers than the deck provided. So he asked his mom to write down a list of other professions he came up with that were not in the deck. This list kept growing longer and longer. Everywhere he went he came up with more and more ideas. The only problem was that although he could read the list, he wanted pictures to go with the titles. So Daniel and his mother decided to make a personal picture collection of professions. They set out together to tackle this project. Daniel's mom helped him by writing a conversation play which he could practice so he could be more clearly understood. Then they set a goal of collecting 100 workers; over twice as many as he had in his commercially printed deck. They also decided that after Daniel had explained his project and mom had taken the picture, he would collect four facts from the interviewee orally and then go home and type this up with his mom's help. His mom would laminate the pictures and descriptions using packing tape so they would be indestructible. Daniel's project was expanded to school when he wanted to collect the different professions of the staff there. He typed these up at school furthering his connection between home and school. Now, not only was the project meeting Daniels personal desire to have a bigger collection of profession cards, but he was also practicing his articulation skills, learning interview skills, meeting lots of new people, investigating what kinds of professions are in the world, practicing his letter sound and spelling skills as well as improving his typing skills. He has also created an amazing deck of cards that prove to be a conversation piece for him with others. This was turning out to be a most impressive feat for a project that was started with a desire of his own. Currently Daniel has cards that travel with him everywhere. It is doubtful that with the strong desire his collection has created that he will want to stop at 100.

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Brenda Rouleau, United States, NH
2/14/2011 7:14:22 PM
I worked with Daniel for five years, K through 3rd grade. I am so very proud of his accomplishments. Continue the great work, Daniel. Way to go!!! Sincerely, Mrs. Rouleau

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