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It is an uncommon condition that occurs rarely in 30,000 births and is still difficult to diagnose. It is not an inherited disease from parents. A few common features help to make a diagnosis. For example; The roots of the nose are flattened, eyes close to each other and slanted, upper palate high, nose tip raised. Heart diseases are seen in the first years. Infants who have the disease have difficulty sleeping at a few months of age. Because William syndrome affects the muscles, these children walk late and show balance difficulties with coordination of hand and foot movements. Body temperatures are high, high levels of calcium in the blood can cause vomiting, so diet can be applied. These situations may cause nutritional problems. Annoying crying can be seen in the first years.
Children with William Syndrome are extroverted and social, they like to talk, especially when they enjoy dialogue with their elders. They are helpful, they love the work done together, they are kind and understanding. They love and adhere to formalities, like regular things, imitate the elders, and use the words of elders as well as innocence. They are active, but slow to learn. They have difficulty in motor coordination, they have difficulty in cycling, switching and closing buttons, cutting with scissors and holding pencils, but they do not give up. Learning difficulties are not very low. There are good vocabulary connected to the family, and they manage to speak clearly at school age.
Motor activities can be overcome with group activities. They have difficulty sitting in long-term activities. They have high success in group studies but can be bored with long-term studies. They have difficulty making friends with peers. They are excited, worried about themselves and others. Toilet, eating and drinking, sleep is quite good level. They feel uncomfortable with high-pitched sounds. Since children with William Syndrome each have different characteristics, it becomes difficult to determine the appropriate educational environment for them. Some children with William's syndrome receive regular education and can adapt to their normal peers. Some Children with William's Syndrome attend special education classes.
In children with William Syndrome, reading and writing skills are easier to start from reading skills than writing skills. Starting with pictures about the subjects he likes, using the words of the subjects, making them perceive by seeing the words motivate children with William Syndrome, and reading skills become easier as they work fondly. Since these children show insufficiency in hand-eye coordination in writing skills, it is necessary to make many repetitions in writing skills.
Arithmetic skills are the most challenging area for these children. Even children with adult William Syndrome find it difficult to write and process numbers correctly, even to learn hours. The vocabulary of children with William syndrome is broad, it is important to make them talk about their favorite subject. Many children with William Syndrome are interested in music, rhythm and rhyme, and they love it. This makes it easier to learn poetry and even rhymes can learn very easily.
Their memory is superior in certain subjects, their memory is strong, and can be used in this training. All kinds of transport vehicles, construction machinery, pop stars, news programs, insects, nature movements attract a lot of attention, which can be used to motivate these children. They love to travel. Parallel to their education at school, they can have a profession in line with their individual interests.
(Prepared by: Erdi Kanbaş-Special Education Specialist, For all your questions; ekanbas @ mynet.com, tel: 0.216.521.68.99)
William Syndrome-Chidren with William Syndrome and Infontile Hypercalcaemia- Asuman Yılmaz-Sevgi Cicekleri Dergisi-Sevgi Mentally Handicapped Children Protection and Acquisition Association Publications-June 1996.