Life gets more complex as children grow up, and starting school is a huge milestone for many families.
The beginning of a child’s schooling journey is a time filled with new skills to be learnt, from recognising their name, to tying their laces, to opening yoghurt containers by themselves.
Listening and spoken language sessions using the Auditory-Verbal Therapy philosophy, such as those found at Hear and Say, regard the parents as the natural language teachers of their children. Listening and Spoken Language Specialists, who are typically speech pathologists by background, coach and guide the parents to understand, monitor, and grow their child’s skills.
In contrast, schools are typically set up to educate children without significant onsite involvement from parents. Teachers teach the children, rather than educate the parents directly in how to address their child’s developmental needs. Interactions with peers and schoolyard culture also play a powerful role in shaping children.
For a child with hearing loss who is learning to listen and speak, the additional needs at school are related to his or her need for auditory access to, and comprehension of, classroom discussion.
Teachers often remind us…
Children don’t need to know things or do things perfectly, because they’ll teach it, but exposure and experience makes a difference. Sing nursery rhymes; talk with your child about the world around them; read actual books and let the kids turn the pages; and use scissors, glue and pencils. Encourage your child to practice some sitting and listening.
Hear and Say Listening and Spoken Language Specialists add their tip…
Help your child advocate for themselves and know how to manage their assistive technology. Invite the teachers to Hear and Say’s Education Support workshop, and help your child learn some typical classroom vocabulary before their first day.