Monday, November 27, 2017

Holiday Tips For Children With Hearing Loss

The H-o-l-i-d-a-y season is upon us, which means festive music, family gatherings and special traditions. All the noise and excitement may cause communication difficulties for children who are deaf and hard of hearing.

Comment and let me know if you try these seven H-O-L-I-D-A-Y tips!

7 tips to make the holidays special for children with hearing loss

To make the holidays even more enjoyable and special for adults and children with hearing loss, try these seven HOLIDAY tips!
Holidays are about listening to joyous music, lively conversations and spending time with family and friends. Encourage your child to be the Holiday Host and greet visitors and take their coats. This will boost your child’s confidence while giving him a chance to talk face to face in a quiet setting.  Role-play upcoming holiday situations and practice good listening strategies. Create a secret a signal so your child can notify you when he is having a difficult time hearing. Keep the holiday music off or at a low volume, as your child is likely not the only one bothered by clatter and background music.
Organize an email and send it your family and friends before you gather for the holidays. Write a quick update about your child’s listening and spoken language progress and his hearing technology. Dealing with this before the holidays will allow you to spend time celebrating rather than answering questions of well-meaning friends and family.
Large family dinners are noisy so plan accordingly.  One suggestion is ensuring your child knows the topic of the conversation. Consider using “conversation starter cards” around the table which are always fun. Also, have someone special seated next to your child who can repeat a joke or summarize a story if your child mishears.

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Monday, November 6, 2017

November - Listening and Spoken Language Calendar

Click HERE to download the free NOVEMBER printable calendar with daily Listening and Spoken Language suggestions for families from the Moog Center.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Right to Work

Read a new article about Megan Swanson one of my AV graduates who won Miss Amazing Miss 2017 and two others who prove that women with disabilities could be your best employees. Thanks to Miss Amazing, hundreds of girls and women with disabilities have had the opportunity to gain communication and self-advocacy skills that translate into the workplace.

October marks National Disability Employment Awareness Month, and many people with disabilities struggle to find and keep jobs. Currently, the unemployment rate for people with disabilities is 10.5%. That’s compared to 4.5% for people without disabilities. So often, this problem is perpetuated by the unawareness of the strengths that people with disabilities can bring to the table. In fact, it’s been proven that companies that hire people with disabilities are better able to innovate and nurture a stronger sense of loyalty among their customers and employees. 

Read on at:

Guess My Halloween Costume!

So it's the 1st of November and we are having a week-long Halloween celebration in AVT. Look at this handsome Listener playing Guess My Halloween Costume! 
Auditory memory skills were one target, as he had to remember all of the answers to the questions asked in order to make an accurate guess of his costume. He won and his Mom and I were the losers!

How to Use Clear Speech To Help People With Hearing Loss Understand

Queen Elizabeth,  A newscaster, and an Elementary School Teacher
 are examples of people who talk with clear speech.

Just like dancing a tango, it takes two people to conduct a conversation. When one of the conversational partners has a hearing loss, we often assume that this person must do all of the work in making a conversation successful---for example, the person with hearing loss might wear a hearing aid, try to read lips, ask for clarification when communication breakdowns occur, and so forth.

That a person with hearing loss should take responsibility for successful conversations is only partly true because the other person in the conversation also has a responsibility to talk as clearly as possible so that the person with hearing loss can best understand what is being said. 

Research has shown that when conversational partners talk with clear speech, the person with hearing loss understands a lot more of what is being said then if they are talking conversationally.  So what is clear speech?

Here's an example of clear versus conversational speech:
  • Clear speech:  "Did you eat yet?"
  • Conversational speech:  "D'jeet yet?"
The researchers at clEAR Auditory Brain Training have developed a short video to teach people how to speak with clear speech.  You can watch it by going to this YouTube address or by visiting the clEAR website.

Youtube address:

clEAR website video address:

If you are an audiologist, please feel free to share this video with the loved ones of your patients.  If you are a person with hearing loss, whether or not you use a hearing aid, feel free to ask your loved one to watch this video.  When a partner speaks clearly, conversations become more successful and everyone wins.

Ear train the brain: