Congratulations! You are the parent of a wonderful child, and, among many other wonderful traits, your child happens to have a hearing loss. Now, on top of running to school events, work, and other family obligations, you have also earned yourself a new job title: ADVOCATE.
I recently came across this Family Communication Self-Evaluation checklist. I believe it illustrates several points (does the child have access to ALL of the same information as hearing peers? is communication easy for both parents and children? etc.) that are crucial for parents to consider when choosing a method of communication/education for their child with hearing loss. I have only read this excerpt, not the entire booklet, so I do not know what, if any, communication methodology the authors support. However, I believe that the points presented align well with a listening and spoken language approach to educating children who are D/HOH. Here are some things to consider:
I don’t know what it is about duct tape, but it is almost universally fascinating. For “just tape” it’s awfully fun, and very useful to lots of people. In my weekly clinic meeting, my supervisor challenged my fellow graduate clinicians and I to come up with activities to target speech and language goals using just that — duct tape!
One of the most crucial aspects of a listening and spoken language intervention with children who are deaf or hard of hearing is PARENT TRAINING. Parents must be empowered to be their child’s primary teacher and language facilitator. Professionals help parents along this journey by modeling skills and techniques, providing information, and guiding and coaching parents to implement listening and language strategies all day, every day in the course of normal activities in the family’s life.