Newsline Volume 31, Number 2

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Book Reviews

Reviewed by Beth Dworetzky

Managing My Money: Banking and Budgeting Basics
By Natalie Hale
Woodbine House 2010. 175 pp. 2010

Managing My Money: Banking and Budgeting BasicsNatalie Hale created this workbook and CD to help teens and adults with special needs learn to manage money. As a parent of an adult with Down syndrome, Ms. Hale knows first hand that learning to manage money is an essential life skill. As a reading consultant, she is expert at developing tools families and educators can use to teach individuals with learning disabilities or developmental delays the skills they need to live independently. While written at a third to fourth grade level, each lesson was designed for an individual working with a parent, teacher, or other adult.

There are three sections: Keeping Records, Keeping a Budget, and Keeping a Checking Account. Each section has separate lessons. A first grade reading and writing level is recommended. Students will also need a calculator. The type size is large, color-coded, and the graphics are colorful and engaging.


Woodbine House has donated a copy of this book to the Federation. Call 617-236-7210, ext. 317 to make arrangements to borrow a book. See the Woodbine House catalogue at


Assistive Technology for Young Children: Creating Inclusive Learning Environments
By Kathleen Curry Sadao and Nancy B. Robinson
Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co. 2010. 327 pp .

Assistive Technology for Young Children: Creating Inclusive 
Learning EnvironmentsThe authors, both early childhood specialists, created this book to support the efforts of professionals and families in identifying assistive technology (AT) that will help young children, birth through 5 years old, meet developmental and educational goals identified on their IFSP (Individualized Family Service Plan for early intervention) or IEP (Individualized Education Program) in school.

They define AT as "any tool, device, or adaptation that allows [young children] more ways to gain access to the people, places, and settings where they can be exposed to typical developmental activities."

This book is based on research and the four federal laws that provide individuals with disabilities full access to AT and services. These are:

  1. The Technology-Related Assistance of Individuals with Disabilities Act of 1988 (the Tech Act)

  2. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

  3. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504)

  4. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Each chapter provides information about AT options, evaluations, strategies for overcoming any barriers, and how to use the AT to help a child’s functional development such as fostering early literacy skills, play, and social interactions to support inclusion. There is an emphasis on the importance of family partnerships. The resources mentioned throughout the book are categorized by chapter in a separate section at the end. Many of the resources provide free stories, adapted books, and Boardmaker downloads. A CD-ROM is included as well. It contains printable forms for evaluating a child’s AT needs, guidance for choosing AT strategies, and toolkits that can be customized to help each child meet developmental goals through the use of AT. It also includes case studies.


Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co has donated a copy of this book to the Federation. Call 617-236-7210, ext. 317 to make arrangements to borrow it. See the Brookes catalogue at