BEATING THE HEAT WITH FUN FILLED ACTIVITIES FOR LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT THIS SUMMER

As the Mercury rises above 45 degrees, HearMeSpeak suggests some fantastic ideas to beat the heat in a fun filled way to develop and expand communication skills in your children with hearing loss.

1          VISITING YOUR GRANDPARENT’S HOUSE

 

Summer vacations are the time when mothers, even more than kids, look forward to visiting their mother’s house. And why not? After all, mothers also need a break. So, let the grandparents take over…

Visiting the family home gives our children a good opportunity to interact with their grandparents and learn their native language. Usually in our families especially in North India, we talk to our children in either English or Hindi. But, our native language may be different, such as Punjabi or Haryanvi etc. Let your children Listen and Learn their native language from their Grandparents.

Researchers have recently found that children as young as 11 months old who are raised bilingual, excel not only at two spoken languages, but also show increased brain activity when undertaking tasks that aren’t language-related.

 

Just like their first language, children will initially develop a receptive understanding of their native language, and then learn to express it meaningfully.

 

 

2          DIVING INTO THE POOL

 

With the advancement of technology, we now have access to various types of Aqua accessories, which can be used while swimming. Water resistant technologies give our children a great opportunity to learn meaningful new vocabulary words and concepts, such as diving, splashing, and different names of swimming strokes like breast stroke, butterfly stroke, and so forth. So, you too can jump into the pool with your children, and play all kinds of water games — and have loads of fun.

 

3          INDOOR GAMES IN THE AFTERNOON

With the mercury touching 45 degrees in the afternoons, it is just not possible to engage in outdoor sports. So, why not use this time to play some indoor games like Ludo, Snake and Ladder, Lotto or Guess Who? All these games are Treasures of Language. For example, while playing snake and ladder, you can enrich language with phrases such as – roll the dice, now it’s my turn, it’s your turn, skip, count, go up the ladder, wait for your turn, miss you turn, count and move the counter etc. These games not only teach our children new words, but also help developing social communication while enhancing their cognitive skills.

4          HOBBY COURSES

Summer break also provides an opportunity for our children to pursue hobbies and interests they may not have had time for in their busy school days. They can be enrolled in music classes, dance classes, art and craft classes, gardening classes or in a theatre classes, as per the child’s interest. Each activity offers valuable opportunities to develop not only their language skills, but also their communication and social skills as they meet new children and make new friends. As parents, you need to encourage your children to interact not only with their course coordinators, but also with their new friends. Talk about what happened in the class. Ask what new things/ideas your child learned, and about the names of their new friends and conversational exchanges.

 

5          JUST CHILL

It is so very important to simply chill with your children. For example, just go for an evening walk together, and have an ice-cream to beat the heat. Talk about different ice cream flavours. Give choices. Let your child place the orders. Let your children pay for the treat, and encourage them to do the calculations and count the change from the transaction.

Hope these tips will be a helpful. So have fun and relax with your children!

RITU NAKRA

LSLS Cert.AVT

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HearMeSpeak celebrates Mother’s Day!

As a parent of a young hearing-impaired child, you are always looking for special days to celebrate and various opportunities to enrich their speech and language skills.

We at HearMeSpeak would like to make this a very special “Mother’s Day” by easing off your burden of how and what to do on this day.

Mothers – with whom our world begins and ends.

Celebrating Mother’s Day with great ideas and giving our children an opportunity to enrich speech and language in a fun-filled way, all stored in a secret box.

 Dear Parents and Professionals , kindly see the following link to know the contents of this secret box and also to learn how to use the contents to make this day a special one, not only for your child but also for yourself.

https://blab.im/6afa4854a2664579902d948d076ba20b

Best Wishes,

Ritu Nakra

LSLS Cert.AVT

Living life with my new friend !!

MY STORY WITH MY NEW FREIND PIC” Hello friends! ”
” What ? ”
” I can’t hear you all..  No not at all .. Not a single word ” – said a little boy to himself And from there on he believed he was born with a  hearing disability.

” What are my parents doing to me. I’m scared, Mamma please hold my hand, I feel good when u r around me”,  – his inner voice said to himself.

” Oh God !! I have a pain in my ear. I was in OPD, but the medicine which my mamma feeds me makes me feel better. “- And he recovered soon.

” Wow ” –  the little boy was amazed !

” What was that ? ” – he questioned  to himself.

” They made me  wear an equipment.  It’s amazing. “,thought the excited little boy.

” I can now hear you all. It’s new to me & I’m loving it. “, said the delighted little boy .

My parents and I call it as “Om”. It’s my hearing implant and a friend who accompanies me through the thick and thins of my lifetime.

” Life is so Wonderful when I am with my new friend. Yes, I’m born deaf, but with  my friend i have proved that deafness wrong. I can now face the world with my Om. It has become my strength. I play, dance, sing and  go crazy with it. There is so much of melody in it. It is the best part of my life and the  best thing that has ever  happened to me.  Without my friend I’m incomplete. I feel proud to call it as my friend. ”

” The journey of my sound life seems beautiful with you. And now i know that Aadhit is my name all because of you. Although my parents say I’m special but my friend, you hold a special place in my heart more than anything.  Now that I believe our friendship is forever ,no one can tear us apart and I promise that our friendship will last forever. ”

A true relationship doesn’t need two people , it can be shared with things around us. Friendship is all about trusting each other, helping each other and being crazy with each other together !

“And that’s what I do with my hearing equipment.   I love my Om and don’t you..? ”

– Alpa Bhawani

The story of a young girl..

Day 1

Life has meaning. Life has a purpose and when one comes to life that meaning comes into existence. For long people have wondered as to where life comes from .for me, I am the same as the next person wondering the same questions. Unfortunately, sometimes I am looked upon as a fragile person, a person damaged by some extraordinary co incidence. And there are times when people treat me as a normal person .in reality what I feel ,is different from what I show .I  am proud of my disability. It makes me stand out from others in a way that is unique. I am  hearing impaired. If u think about it, I should be looking for moments in life where I should be looking to improve myself. But the thing is I have already found it. I am improving myself experience by experience .we are often treated differently whether we like it or not. My beginning wasn’t easy. I had my so called peers judging my every move. But with the help of my family and a few close friends I was always on track. Though however much you may try, it will never be enough unless you do it on your own. I remember being taunted about my implant and the only solace I could find was that it all was temporary. I wanted to change these stereotypes about us being fragile .Yet, I admit to being fragile once upon a time.

As technology advanced and I changed schools switching to a more mainstreamed school, the opportunities were there oh yes! but along with it came new faces, new experiences. It was hard at first. It’s always hard. I am in grade ten now and frankly speaking, the world hasn’t changed. But I have .I know who I am and my choices. I know my friends and i know where my loyalties lie. It all comes with time. even if we are left alone, we will rise despite the odds and for that i am thankful for my disability for it has made me who i am .there will always be people who despise their hearing impairment but i can without a doubt say it is a gift. a gift which we learn to accept once it recognized .I  want to become a travel journalist and write about the world in ways  that haven’t been sought out yet, touching the hearts of people around the globe is my goal. I don’t need anyone’s  help or pity. I  don’t want to be  seen as hearing impaired ,rather I want to stand out and make my own way in life because I have a gift which  has allowed me to become who I am and I want is people to recognize me as ANANYA NAKRA  and not the hearing impaired girl.

PRECAUTIONS TO TAKE TO ENJOY SAFE HOLI

Ananya Anand

 HOLI HAII!!!! 


New technology and few precautions can help Cochlear Implant recipients to enjoy holi with fun.

Bright colors, water balloons, lavish gujiyas and melodious songs’ are the ingredients of perfect Holi. Wishing you and your family a very happy and wonderful Holi.

In this blog we discuss few tips and suggestions to make the holi for our cochlear implant recipients more safe and joyous

  1. Use “AQUA ACCESSORY” – With the new technology called “AQUA ACCESSORY” the cochlear implant recipients can enjoy the festival of colours and water. The accessory is available with different names in  all the three cochlear implnt companies  – Cochlea Nucleus, Advance Bionics, Medel. For more information on the accessories contact us or the company representtives. *It can not be used with old generations speech processors though.*
  2. Do not hit each other as  a blow to the head in the area of the cochlear implant could damage the implant and result in its failure.
  3. Do not let anyone apply continued pressure to the coil  as this may result in pressure sores.
  4. Before engaging in activities that create extreme electrostatic discharge, such as playing on plastic slides, remove your processor. In rare cases, a discharge of static electricity can damage the electrical components of the cochlear implant system or corrupt the program in the processor. If static electricity is present (for example when removing or putting on clothes over your head, or getting out of a vehicle), before the cochlear implant system contacts any object or person you should touch something conductive such as a metal door handle.

Content Contributor

Dr. Ruchika Mittal

Ph.D (Delhi University), MASLP (PGIMER, Chandigarh), BASLP (AIIMS, New Delhi)

Audiologist & Speech Language Pathologist

Consultant Audiologist & Speech Pathologist

Mittal Clinic – Advanced Center for  Heart & Speech & Hearing Disorders

Senior Audiologist & Speech Pathologist

Army Hospital (Research & Referral), Delhi Cantt 110010

Mittal Clinic, M 38 B First Floor,  Rajouri garden,  New Delhi 110027

 

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR TEACHERS HAVING A HEARING IMPAIRED CHILD IN THEIR CLASSROOM

OPTIMISE LEARNING :

  1.  Minimise background noise
    A mainstream classroom is a usually a busy, noisy place. Children who have any degree of hearing loss may have difficulty hearing the important information when surrounded by other noises. These noises cause a masking of the important spoken information that needs to be heard. Thus background noise should be kept to a minimum.
  2. Preferential seating
    Place the student in a seat so that both ears are facing the desired sound source and away from the sources of noise such as windows, hallway, or playground, air conditioners or even talkative children.
    A seat that is either in the first row or second row and centre is preferable. This will improve the student’s opportunity to hear and listen and to observe natural body gestures and non-verbal communication.
  3.  During Group Discussions
    When group discussions are occurring, make sure only one person is speaking at a time. This can be encouraged by making a make belief mike with a pencil and who so ever gets that mike will talk.
  4.  Use of communication book
    Use the communication notebook to jot down simple comments to the family on a daily basis. Keep your remarks simple and to the point.

 FOCUS ATTENTION

Make sure that you have the attention of the child. Use either his/her name or give the listening cue like “listen class”.

6dB RULE

It is important to understand that once teacher moves away from the child, the auditory signal is diminished. If you double the distance, the signal is reduced by 6dB.

FM AND SOUNDFIELD

Teachers need to accept the use all of the technology that is available to assist the child with the hearing loss. It can be FM system or any other wireless accessory to improve the signal to noise ratio.

BUDDY SYSTEM

Having a classmate provide friendly support can assist in making sure that the child who has a hearing loss is engaged in all the activities.

VISUAL/WRITTEN CUES

All upcoming tests, events, assignments and announcements should be written on the board or included in the weekly agenda or newsletter that can go home every week.

INCIDENTAL / OVER HEARING ABILITY

Children with hearing loss often do not overhear conversations / new vocabulary etc. Where as 90% of language learnt by normal hearing children is done through incidental learning. Thus teachers must make sure that the child with hearing loss is included in conversations and the teacher checks that the child has heard it.

PRE TEACHING

Parents have good knowledge of how to support their child thus giving them the new vocabulary, themes, topics and concepts to be done in the class in advance will help the child to understand in a much better and easier way in the classroom.

DISICPLINE

In matters of discipline, the student with hearing impairment needs to be treated as much like a student with normal hearing and needs to understand the rules and regulations of the classroom.

WHEN COMMUNICATION BREAKS DOWN

  1. Check the battery / functioning of the device. (Inform Parents)
  2. Get closer and reduce background.
  3. Instead of repeating, ask the child,” what did you hear?”
  4. Rephrase the information or make it easier for the child to understand.
  5. Use acoustic highlighting on key words e.g “I want you to bring your English notebook.”

 

Content Contributor

RITU NAKRA
(LSLS Cert.AVT)