It is one thing for an adult to lose his or hearing later in life, but another entirely to work with a child that is deaf from the beginning. Feelings of despair can quickly set in, so it is important to develop a strong network of support to help a child through his or her formative years. Thankfully, there have been a large number of advances in this area through the years. Consider the following ways to help support your deaf child in their educational endeavors.
Children who have suffered from hearing loss need to have sounds amplified all around them. Technology advances in this area enable sounds to be filtered out, eliminating the background noise that has traditionally made it difficult for partially deaf children to focus in an academic environment. Children are also particularly self-conscious about the way oversized hearing aids make them look in the classroom. To overcome this, parents should look into the hearing aids that are custom fitted to be placed right inside the ear canal itself. It is also important to teach children how to use these devices so that they can thrive in school.
Smartphones today contain a wealth of applications designed to make the educational world come alive for the deaf child. Consider the app, Tap Tap. This is an application available for the iPhone that alters the user when a particular sound is detected by the phone. A common example would be a fire alarm. The child will then be notified by a vibration on the phone, and then he or she can read the alert on the screen to determine what is going on. Another great application is Dragon Dictation. This is available on both the iOS and Android platforms and is primarily a voice recognition software system. The words of the instructor, for example, can be captured and then instantly translated into text for the student to read.
Online Communication Disorders Programs
These programs are readily available from anywhere and work to effectively education adults about the various tools and resources available today to help individuals who are either deaf or hearing impaired. For parents who have a deaf child, earning an online communication disorders degree should be considered. This is a great way for parents to become involved in the education of their child by work to provide them with the support that they need to excel in an academic environment. Parents who feel trapped in their inability to help their child will find these online programs to be of particular benefit.
Webcam and Video Chat Technology
With many school programs today taking place online, webcam and video chat technology are helping deaf children to become involved at unprecedented levels. Most smartphones and computers today have a camera already built into the structure. This allows the software necessary to conduct a video chat to be seamlessly integrated into a classroom situation. As long as a student has a smartphone, they will be able to participate and use other tools at their disposal to thrive.
Deaf children today have a wealth of educational resources at their disposal. As a parent, it is important to make this accessible to your child and to help facilitate a productive academic environment in which they can thrive. With all of the advances being made today, there is no reason that a deaf child cannot flourish into an adult that makes a positive contribution to society. Their overall quality of life will be enhanced as well, so consider these 4 ways of support your deaf child in their educational endeavors today.
Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn't on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter @RachelleWilber