Monday, March 25, 2013

Sound Localization: Easter Egg Hunt

Sound Localization and the Electronic Easter Egg Hunt

Available to purchase: JoJo & Friends Electronic Easter Egg Hunt by Ouaps Company

Hide one of the egg noise-making toys, from your child’s view somewhere in a room.

When beginning the Egg Hunt:

First, ask your child WHAT he hears.

Then, WHERE the sound is coming from.

You may want to begin by keeping the choices simple. For example, "Do you hear the sound near the windows or closer to the fireplace?" 

Remind the child to listen first or else they will begin searching with their eyes! 

To play this game, with the electronic Eggs, press the on/off button on the side and hide it. The egg then calls out phrases periodically like, "Yoo-hoo! I'm hiding! I'm over here! " 
Once the toy is found, you can pop it apart to reveal the character inside, who will exclaim something like, "It's me, Maggie! You found me!
Sound Localization
The ability to localize sounds develops over time. The earlier your child has received his bilateral cochlear implants/hearing aids, the sooner he starts picking up sound cues and gains valuable experiences localizing sounds. 

Tips For Children Learning to Locate Sound Sources

  • Using two different musical toys, hidden from the child’s view, locating one to the left of the child and one to the right side of the child. Then, make a sound with each instrument in varied sequence, ask your child to identify which instrument is on which side. You can do this with Mom's vs. Dad's voice as well. 
  • At the dinner table or while playing games help your child locate who is speaking. Your entire family can help the child learn to locate and follow then natural flow of
  • conversation.
  • Playing hide-and-seek indoors (e.g. room or house), hiding yourself and calling out to your child to find you. This task may be varied by taking turns between hiding and searching.
  • Games in a group, such as “Blindman’s Buff ” or “I Spy” (with sounds), hand clapping games are ideal for practicing sound localization in a  playful way.
  • Teach your child that is hard of hearing to be extra alert visually in crowds, walking near cars, crossing streets, riding bicycles, and in group games. Remind your child to look for traffic and not to depend on hearing oncoming vehicles. If your child rides a bicycle, consider rear-view mirrors to help him see traffic he might not hear.            

Sample Localization GOAL with Benchmarks
GOAL: Child will auditory locate with bilateral cochlear implants/hearing aids:

-  a sound presented at ear level within a 3 foot radius in front or on either side
-  a sound presented at ear level within a 6 foot radius from behind
 - understand and verify gross, environmental, music or speech sounds within  9 feet, then 12 feet and  finally, within the same room in all directions.
 - Understand sounds with a specific location or direction outside.

Click HERE for a packet by Med-EL entitled,
 "Sound Localization Tips and Information for users of Cochlear Implants"

Searching and then Locating Sounds

GOAL: The child searches for and/or finds the auditory stimulus. 

Searching is a prerequisite skill for localizing.

 Children with hearing in only one ear will not  be able to localize to the sound source.

(I have given this information to parents for many years and don't remember the source or

  if I wrote the protocol. If you know, please contact me!)

Target these localization skills  at home and record your child's skill level:

    a. The skill is not present 
 b. The skill is emerging 
  c. The skill is in process 
d. The skill is acquired

1. searches for loud environmental sounds (vacuum, telephone) or noisemakers (drum, bell) 
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 
2. searches for source of music  
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 
3. searches for source of vocalizations (e.g., exaggerated suprasegmentals) 
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside    __ outside 
__ in quiet    __ noise 
__ prompted    __ spontaneous 
4.searches for source of discourse (e.g., connected speech) 
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 

                                                 This is one of my Little Listeners
                                                       who is now in High School!

5. localizes to loud environmental sounds (vacuum, telephone) or noisemakers (drum, bell)  
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 
__ one level  __ multiple levels 

6. localizes to music source  
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 
__ one level  __ multiple levels 

7. localizes to speaker making vocalizations  
(e.g., exaggerated suprasegmentals) 
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)  __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 

8. localizes to speaker using discourse  
__ close (3’)  __ far (10’)   __ another room 
__ inside  __ outside 
__ in quiet  __ noise 
__ prompted  __ spontaneous 
__ one level  __ multiple levels


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Humpty Dumpty in Auditory Verbal Therapy

Activities that involve music, singing and rhyming are natural and enriching for all children,
 and especially for children with cochlear implants/hearing aids who are listening and using spoken language. Incorporate music throughout your  day. Sing songs and act out finger plays.

Click HERE for  printable HUMPTY DUMPTY story props, a minibook and rhyming words.

Acting out HUMPTY DUMPTY with a hard-boiled egg is a fun and learning to listen activity.
 There is a whole lesson in making a Humpty Dumpty egg. 

A few Spoken Language Targets:

For toddlers, focus on "more", "uh-oh", "sit down", "fall down" "broken" talk about the horses and more.

For preschoolers, some concepts to introduce while reading Humpty Dumpty are those, which require fine auditory discrimination involving syntax such as sat/sit, fall/fell, horse/horses/ man/men. 

You may also choose to talk about positional words (e.g. above, below, after, before, over, under, on, off).

Expand your child's vocabulary for broken with synonyms such as - break, separate, split up, fall apart, come apart.

Critical thinking and conversations can emerge while discussing how to repair HUMPTY DUMPTY.

Talk about HUMPTY DUMPTY'S changing emotions throughout the rhyme - happy, frightened, sad, hurt, disappointed.

Check out this free App: Rhymes for Tots by Emantras 
 that also includes putting broken toys together again!

HERE is a easy an experiential listening and language craft that involves making
 HUMPTY DUMPTY out of a yogurt container.

 My friend and colleague Dave Sindrey has  offered a 

printable Humpty Dumpty Game that 

your children/students will love. Grab it HERE

Dave Sindrey is a SLP and a Cert. Auditory-Verbal Therapist. 

Dave’s site is He is the creator of the Listening Room, which 

provides hundreds of free activities for parents and professionals working with children who 

have hearing loss.

Have fun listening and talking. We sure did!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Don't Talk About Colors!

St. Patrick's Day for my little listeners today included rainbows.

Did you know that in Auditory-Verbal Therapy we rarely talk about the colors?

Once a child uses the COLOR to describe an object, it becomes the easy, go to adjective.
 That’s a red apple, a yellow sun, a green frog… Rather, when playing with the frog, we model, expand and talk by describing how the frog hops, has big eyes, can swim in the water etc. 
Have you ever meet a child with hearing loss that needs to be TAUGHT colors? 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Auditory Verbal Resource Websites and Links

Where to Begin:

1. TED Talks video, Establishing a Sound Foundation for Children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing. Dr. Karl R. White explains the differences in raising children with hearing loss today versus 35 years ago and the key factors for successful language development.

2. Series of short videos of my friend and mentor, Carol Flexer, PhD, CCC-A, LSLS Cert. AVT, as she teaches on auditory brain development, acoustic accessibility, the listening environment, signal to noise ratio and more in her engaging videos. Be sure to scroll down to see Carol!

4. Investigate the Listening and Spoken Language Knowledge Center a vast site for children and adults with hearing loss, their families and the professionals who support them.

5.  Success For Kids With Hearing Loss where Karen L. Anderson PhD, an audiologist has a wealth of resources
6. 101 FAQs about Auditory-Verbal Practice. It is an excellent resource edited by Warren Estabrooks, the President and CEO of WE Listen International. The book takes the reader on a journey through current theory, practice, and evidence-based outcomes. It offers knowledge, guidance, encouragement and hope for future generations of children who are deaf or hard of hearing, their families and professionals. 
I want to learn more:  

Audiology and Auditory-Verbal Websites:
Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Websites:

Therapy Product Websites:
 Special Education Blogs/Websites:

Auditory-Verbal Therapy and Speech-Language Pathology 
Information and Materials Websites:
  • Speaking of Speech
  • Boardmaker Share
  • Super Duper Handy Handouts
  • SLPath
  • Free Technology for Teachers
  • Speech Page
  • Therasimplicity
  • Perkilou Products
  • Sparklebox
  • Classroom Freebies
  • Classroom Freebies Too!
  • Fun Fonix
  • MES English
  • Free Language Stuff
  • Speech-Language Resources
  • Tools For Educators
  • Making Learning Fun
  • Worksheet Works
  • Judith Maginnis Kuster's list of materials that can be adapted for therapy
  • RHL School
  • SEN Teacher
  • School Express
  • Mrs. Pancake
  • Twinkl
  • DLTK
  • Enchanted Learning
  • Kids Pages
  • Super Teacher Worksheets