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COMMUNICATION PLANS: Addressing the Needs of Students with Hearing Impairment Gillis Ward, Director Local Education Agency Support Services for the Hearing.

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Presentation on theme: "COMMUNICATION PLANS: Addressing the Needs of Students with Hearing Impairment Gillis Ward, Director Local Education Agency Support Services for the Hearing."— Presentation transcript:

1 COMMUNICATION PLANS: Addressing the Needs of Students with Hearing Impairment
Gillis Ward, Director Local Education Agency Support Services for the Hearing Impaired Shelly Wier, Consultant Easter Seals Outreach Program

2 Low Incidence Disability
The basic classroom activity of completing a spelling test becomes a huge endeavor when a student has a hearing loss. [Run Sound Hearing CD, section 10.] BIG IMPACT

3 Arkansas Definition A. “Deafness” means a hearing impairment that is so severe that the child is impaired in processing linguistic information through hearing, with or without amplification, that adversely affects educational performance. B. “Hearing impairment” means an impairment in hearing, whether permanent or fluctuating, that adversely affects a child’s educational performance but that is not included under the definition of deafness. 1. Audiological indicators: An average pure-tone hearing loss in the speech range ( Hz) of 20dB or greater in the better ear. A fluctuating hearing impairment, such as on resulting from chronic otitis media. An average high frequency, pure-tone hearing loss of 35dB or greater in the better ear at two or more of the following frequencies: 2000, 3000, 4000, and 6000 Hz. A permanent unilateral hearing loss of 35dB or greater in the speech range (pure-tone average of Hz). Just for your reference, here are the definitions of “deafness” and “hearing impairment” as listed in our state regulations.

4 Why a Communication Plan?
Students with hearing impairments have unique communication needs All staff need to understand the implications of the communication barriers All aspects of the child’s day must be considered

5 Purpose Since the use of this document is not a state requirement, our purpose in presenting it is to provide a procedure or script within the IEP process that facilitates a more in-depth discussion among IEP team members about the critical issues which impact the development and communication of children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Steps are provided in the form of a checklist or action plan that will guide the IEP team through a series of questions and considerations that will promote the development of goals, activities, strategies, accommodations, and modifications appropriate to the unique needs of these students.

6 “Consideration of Special Factors”
(IDEA 2006, 34 CFR (a)(2)(iv)) The IEP team for a child who is deaf or hearing-impaired must . . . "consider the child's language and communication needs, opportunities for direct communications with peers and professional personnel in the child's language and communication mode, academic level, and full range of needs, including opportunities for direct instruction in the child's language and communication mode." Following these steps will ensure that the “Consideration of Special Factors” component of the IEP for any student with a hearing loss is thoroughly examined. The information obtained from this procedure may be embedded within the IEP or attached separately. We suggest that a communication plan be completed for any student with a hearing loss who is receiving a service, support, or activity from an audiologist and/or teacher of the deaf and hard of hearing and is being considered for or has an IEP. This includes children who are deaf/blind. The IEP team completes a communication plan during the IEP meeting. The educational audiologist and/or teacher of the deaf should be members of the team. If the student utilizes an interpreter, it would be appropriate to also include him/her. Development of the Plan prior to consideration of goals and service planning is the most appropriate.

7 Four Components Consider . . .
Student’s language and communication needs Opportunities for direct communication in the student’s language or primary communication mode (peers/personnel) Academic level Full range of needs, including opportunities for direct instruction in the student’s language or primary communication mode There are four main components that should frame the team’s conversations and guide subsequent action.

8 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs
What is the student’s primary language and/or communication mode? What language(s) and model(s) of communication do the parents use with their child?

9 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
What language(s) and models(s) does the student use to communicate at home, with his/her friends, in the community and in school? How successful is the student’s ability to communicate in a variety of situations?

10 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
How does this student access information in noise or in a room with poor acoustics? Have we adequately considered the “fatigue factor?”

11 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
Have we objectively measured this student’s ability to access information in his/her preferred mode of communication? What type of technology does this student use?

12 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
What is the back-up plan when communication breaks down? How can we assess his/her sign language or oral skill level?

13 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
Does this student need an interpreter? What kind? How can we assess functional hearing (beyond the audiogram)?

14 I. Consider the child's language and communication needs (cont.)
How are tests administered in the classroom? Orally? Written? How does the student access inferential learning?

15 This may be provided by the school or family.
II. Consider opportunities for direct communications* with peers and professional personnel in the child's language and communication mode. *Direct communication occurs person to person, not through an additional source, e.g. educational interpreter, captioner. This may be provided by the school or family.

16 1. Opportunities for direct communication with peers.
Small group activities/projects with other students Extracurricular activities Sign classes for classmates Friends who know sign language Club membership and participation Activities at ASD or with other programs where there are students who are D/HH

17 2. Opportunities for direct communication with professional staff and other school personnel.
Certified teacher of the deaf/hard of hearing Training for staff Staff who know sign language

18 III. Consider academic level
1. Does the student have the communication and language necessary to acquire grade-level academic skills and concepts of the general education curriculum?

19  Yes What supports are needed to continue proficiency in grade-level academic skills and concepts of the general education curriculum?  No What supports are needed to increase the student’s proficiency in his/her language and communication to acquire grade-level academic skills and concepts of the general education curriculum?

20 Examples of Support Speech-language services Educational interpreter
Accommodations/modifications as stated in the IEP, e.g. preteaching vocabulary Tutoring Placement in other Special Ed Services

21 III. Consider academic level (cont.)
2. Do the specialists delivering the communication plan to the student have demonstrated proficiency in the student’s primary communication mode or language? Teachers Interpreters Other staff Make plans for staff to gain needed skill…

22 IV. Consider full range of needs, including opportunities for direct instruction* in the child’s language and communication mode. * Direct instruction occurs person to person, not through an additional source, e.g. educational interpreter, captioner.

23 1. Opportunities for direct instruction in the child’s language and communication mode.
Classroom teacher SLP Resource teacher Others

24 2. Opportunities for interaction with deaf and hard of hearing role models.
Community ASD Local Deaf club Church activities

25 3. The communication-accessible academic instruction, school services, and extracurricular activities the student will receive have been identified.

26 Assistive Technology Soundfield systems Video phones
Hearing aids Personal FM systems

27 Captioning Television Movies DVD’s Computer programs

28 Extracurricular Activities

29 We will resume promptly in 15 minutes.
Let’s Take a Break! We will resume promptly in 15 minutes.


31 Practice with a Case Study
Please form groups of 3-5.

32 Evaluation Speech-Language Impairment vs Hearing Impairment: Required Data Program Planning General Guidelines Recommended Tests and Tools ELIGIBILITY- Make sure you are looking at the appropriate category for requirements! They differ as follows: Communicative Abilities (Speech-Language Impairment) Two or more tests and/or procedures which delineate the specific nature and extent of the disorder (may be necessary to assess related functions which may contribute to or underlie a disorder), and An oral-peripheral speech mechanism examination Communicative Abilities (Hearing Impairment) Language (both receptive and expressive, other than one-word vocabulary), Articulation (one required), Auditory (one required) – This is the component that is most often missed or completed inappropriately using the TACL or some other test of auditory processing skill. We’ve suggested that this be changed to “Listening” to be more clear. We’ll discuss appropriate tools and where to find them in just a few minutes. PROGRAM PLANNING Focus on establishing a baseline, assessing then targeting and monitoring these components: [See handout: “Selecting Components of the Communication Evaluation”]

33 Reception Comprehension Production Intelligibility Conversational
Spoken Language Parameters Linguistic Material Phonemes Words Sentences Discourse Reception Comprehension Production Intelligibility Conversational Competence Spoken Language Parameters: Reception (either auditory or by speechreading) – How much a student takes in will obviously determine how much he comprehends. Comprehension – How much he comprehends will be reflected in the quality and accuracy of the response he formulates. Production – The response he formulates will be impacted by how clearly he can articulate or speak it. Intelligibility – Sometimes clarity must be supported by gestures, written notes, facial expressions, others. Conversational competence – Independent participation in conversation or discourse with others is the end goal.

34 Written Language Parameters Linguistic Material Words Sentences
Graphemes Words Sentences Paragraphs Comprehension Production Coherence/Lucidity Academic Standard Written Language Parameters: Components are along the same lines with a few obvious changes. These components are dependent upon each other as well, and are most often addressed within the district’s literacy program. Phonological awareness for these children may be more of a written task than spoken. They may not ever be able to develop “awareness” as we think of it (auditorily), but they certainly need to learn to discriminate them in writing and as best they can when speechreading. Spelling skills come in here, as well as the same morphological or grammatical and syntax skills needed for spoken language. Meeting the appropriate grade-level, academic standard is the end goal. I suggest you use this to help focus your choice of evaluation tools, and as a means of tracking skill development and planning future targets.

35 Evaluation Speech-Language Impairment vs Hearing Impairment: Required Data Program Planning General Guidelines Recommended Tests and Tools

36 General Testing Guidelines
Check hearing aids to be sure they are functioning correctly. Position yourself where the student can see your face. Be sure lighting is good. Never sit with your back to a window. Choose a place where there is very little or no background noise. Use a natural speaking voice. Do not over exaggerate lip movements.

37 General Testing Guidelines
Ask the student to repeat directions and all verbal stimuli to ensure comprehension. Do not ask “Do you understand?” and accept a head nod. Repeat, then reword, directions the student does not understand. Give auditory or signed directions first, then show picture stimulus. Students can only look at one thing at a time. Provide several practice items to ensure that the student understands the task.

38 General Testing Guidelines
Use visual aids whenever you can (and it is appropriate). Use isolated words in a meaningful sentence when possible. Be aware that due to vocabulary deficits, students who are hearing impaired may not know the names of even simple objects and pictures. If using an interpreter, remember that some signs are iconic.

39 General Testing Guidelines
Review test items prior to giving the test to ensure they are clear and understandable. Keep in mind what skill you are evaluating. For example, if it’s syntax (word order), be sure the student knows the names of the objects, otherwise you’re making it into a vocabulary test. Report performance using percent-correct and percentile scores as these are more informative.

40 Appropriate Tests and Tools
Listening -- CASLLS -- DASL-II -- ESP -- SPICE -- TAC * -- CFAPI Language -- GAEL -- MacArthur -- OWLS -- RDLS-III -- SALT -- Scales -- SKI-HI -- TAGS -- TERA -- TOSS-P -- TOSS-I -- TTFC-2 Articulation -- CID Phon Inv -- CID SPINE -- IEPNCHI -- Paden-Brown -- Ling’s -- SSR You have a handout that lists and describes these tools. Many are very inexpensive and accompany an entire listening curriculum. Publisher information is provided on the back page.

41 We will resume promptly in 1 hour.
Let’s Go To Lunch! We will resume promptly in 1 hour.

42 Functional Listening Assessment
Purpose To determine how a student’s listening abilities are affected by noise, distance, and visual input in a situation that is more representative of his or her actual listening environment than a sound booth.

43 Functional Listening Assessment
Materials Needed Environment for Testing/Physical Set-Up Types of Evaluation Materials Presentation Levels Presentation Protocol Scoring Variations in Protocol Interpretation (Matrix)

44 Therapy Planning Listening Skills Language Skills Articulation Skills

45 Listening For children who are D/HH, it is not a passive activity, but a major active force
Speech patterns, not articulation Practice in conversational context, not single word Goals based on current events in child’s life Focus should be on auditory feedback vs. visual cues

46 Auditory Skills Hierarchy
Awareness/Detection Discrimination Identification/Recognition Comprehension

47 The student can respond to presence or absence of sound.
Awareness/Detection The student can respond to presence or absence of sound. Good place to mention additional handout for use with very young children (blink, frown). Discrimination The student can perceive similarities & differences among 2 or more speech sounds.

48 Identification/Recognition
The student can reproduce speech stimuli by: Naming Repeating Writing Identifying a picture Suprasegmentals: Pitch Loudness Duration Angry vs. Sad Male, Female, Child Segmentals: Initial sound vocabulary Words varying in # of syllables Words with constant consonants but varying vowels Words with constant vowels but varying consonants Two critical elements

49 Comprehension The student can demonstrate understanding of speech by:
Following a direction Answering a question Participating in a conversation Paraphrasing what was heard Acoustical highlighting? Familiar expressions 1 direction/ 2 directions Classroom instructions Sequencing 3 directions Multi-element directions Sequencing 3 events Answering questions about a story: open, closed set All of the above in a noisy environment

50 Continuum of Difficulty
EASY DIFFICULT LOOK and LISTEN with: vibrotactile, cued speech, signs LISTEN ALONE CLOSE DISTANCE QUIET NOISE NONVERBAL RESPONSE VERBAL RESPONSE CLOSED SET OPEN SET SUPRASEGMENTALS SEGMENTALS GROSS CONTRASTS MINIMAL CONTRASTS CONTEXT BOUND CONTEXTUALLY LIMITED Auditory skill development can be viewed on a continuum moving from easy to difficult listening requirements, as follows: Reception Modality: The easiest reception mode for the hearing-impaired student is when stimuli are presented utilizing a combination of auditory, visual, and gestural cues (i.e. both informal systems as well as cued speech or sign language). In contrast, stimuli presented listen-alone (in the absence of supplemental standard speechreading cues) places the most difficult reception demands on the student with a hearing loss. Listening Environment: Close, quiet listening environments are better when compared to listening in noise or at increased distances. Mode of Response: Providing a nonverbal response to verbally presented information is usually much easier for the hearing-impaired student than having the additional demand of formulating a verbal response (due to restricted or underdeveloped expressive language skills). Language Interactions: A closed set for listening as well as responding will be easier for the hearing impaired student than an open set. A closed set of language options is similar, but even more restricted than language interactions that are context-bound. Nature of the Stimuli: Suprasegmental features (i.e. nonspeech features such as intensity, duration, and intonation, which carry the rhythm of the language) are readily perceived by most hearing-impaired individuals, as these features are conveyed primarily through low-frequency cues. This is the frequency range where most hearing-impaired people exhibit the greatest degree of residual hearing. Contrasts: Obviously, it’s much easier to distinguish between the words “sheep” and “boot” than it is to distinguish between the words “sheep” and “sleep.” The typical curriculum for teaching spelling often involves the presentation of word families: cat, mat, hat, sat. This is the worst possible method of presentation for students with hearing impairment because the contrasts are so minimal. Context: When lexical stimuli are used, the student’s knowledge of the vocabulary will greatly affect ease and accuracy of reception and comprehension. Such stimuli presented within a familiar context will be easier to understand than if these same stimuli were presented within a novel context. In the classroom, you want to provide as many of the items and conditions on the easy side as possible so that the student can access the curriculum and get through the day with as little extra difficulty as possible. In therapy, you want to work to improve listening skills with ultimate targets being the situations on the difficult side. Many students will never be able to listen successfully under these conditions so therapy should also focus on teaching the student to advocate for optimal conditions himself.

51 Language and Literacy Normal sequence of language development Reading
4-1/2 to 5 Years 5 to 6 Years 6 to 7 Years Reading Children with hearing impairment develop language along the same sequence as hearing children, albeit at a delayed rate. Obviously, the amount of delay will be different for each child and dependent upon the age at identification and the quality and amount of early intervention services provided. You’ll want to identify deficit language areas as you would for any child and focus intervention on bringing skills up to par with peers. At age 4 ½ to 5 years, a normally developing child . . . * Uses most consonant sounds consistently but not in all contexts * May have difficulty with some consonant blends * Understands 2500 to 2800 words * Knows the following concepts: heavy/light, loud/soft, like/unlike, long/short * Identifies most primary colors * Answers simple "when" questions * Asks the meaning of words * Is able to tell a long story * Uses "his" and "her" accurately * Uses five to eight words in a sentence * Is able to play cooperatively in groups of two to five children * Is beginning to develop friendships At age 5 to 6 years, a normally developing child . . . * Is using the consonants, t, ing, and l consistently in words * Understands 13,000 words * Understands opposites * Understands the following concepts: yesterday/tomorrow, more/less, some/many, several/few, most/least, before/after, now/later, across, pair * Names basic colors * Can tell how objects are the same and how they are different * Can state the order of objects: 1st, 2nd, 3rd * Names the days of the week * Uses all pronouns consistently * Uses comparatives and superlatives: er and est endings in words * Is able to play games by the rules

52 Language and Literacy NOTES CONTINUED
At age 6 to 7 years, a normally developing child . . . * Has mastered the following consonants: sh, ch, j,voiceless th ( r, s, z, and voiced th could take until age 8 to master) * Understands 20,000 to 26,000 words * Understands seasons and concepts of time * Can state personal information, address, phone, etc. * Can answer "why" questions * Uses "have" and "has" correctly most of the time * Can tell a story with a well developed plot and characters in sequence * Uses irregular plurals with more consistency * Can spend hours on one activity * Enjoys spending more time alone in play * Enjoys games and funny books Reading is a challenge for children who are deaf or hard of hearing. It involves vocabulary, language structures, and concepts, which are not easy for them to comprehend in the same way that children with normal hearing do. However, children with hearing loss can become excellent readers. Studies have shown that skills in understanding, speaking, and writing in complex language have a direct relationship with reading success. Do not simplify language and vocabulary when speaking with a child who is deaf or hard of hearing. Use idioms as they occur to you and explain them as you would to any child. You can help a child who is deaf or hard of hearing develop reading and writing skills by making them part of everyday experiences, and have them use trip books and diaries. Video later?

53 Articulation Respiration, Phonation, and Rate Speech Rhythm
Vowel Production Articulation of Consonants Once the student has enough language/vocabulary, testing will look the same as for a hearing student. However, there are certain speech errors that are typical of students with hearing impairment and you should listen for these when assessing speech production. Respiration, Phonation, and Rate Lack of coordination between the articulators and the breath-voice system More breath expended during speech production More restricted range of voice pitch Duration of phonation is about three times greater 28 to 145 words per minute (hearing impaired) as opposed to wpm (normal hearing) Speech Rhythm Primary elements are rate, stress, juncture, breath-grouping, and pauses Poor patterns of rhythm and intonation Inaccurate coarticulation of speech segments Vowel Production Errors tend to follow certain patterns Substitution, neutralization, diphthongization, and nasalization of vowels are most frequent errors Weaker amplitude for all vowels Frequently accompanied by excessive aspiration, nasality, and hoarseness Articulation of Consonants Misarticulations categorized as follows: Voiced-voiceless errors, Omission or distortion of initial consonants, Omission of consonants in blends, Omission or distortion of final consonants, Nasalization, Substitution of one consonant for another, and Intrusive voicing between adjacent consonants. For more severely hearing-impaired children, errors related to voicing, initial consonants, and nasality are more common. Errors of the less severely hearing-impaired involve mainly substitutions, blends, and final consonants. Least visible sounds tend to be misarticulated most frequently Excessive nasal resonance present Prevalence of intrusive voicing; an added release vowel, generally in word-final position I’m not going to address therapy specifics here, but there is a suggested sequence for teaching consonants that should be followed. You have a handout in your packet that outlines this order step by step.

54 Sample Therapy Targets
Speech Reception (Listening) Speech Production Vocabulary Morphology and Syntax Pragmatics Speech Reception (Listening) Resolve perceptual errors through minimal pair contrasts Introduce or reinforce new sounds, words, or grammar, listen-only Increase dependence on audition for speech reception Monitor own speech skills Practice under negative listening conditions (background noise, distance, no context) Increase knowledge of maintenance and repair of amplification For the Teacher Gain student’s attention Repeat answers to questions Direct classroom discussion by naming participants Use visual demonstration Write key words on board Avoid turning back to student Alternate speaking and demonstrating Ensure that teacher’s face is fully visible, well-lit, away from glare Seat student away from obvious noise sources Speech Production Practice recognizing own errors Accept responsibility for making oneself understood Give back more precise speech following request for clarification Refine phoneme production; facilitate carry-over into spontaneous speech Gradually reduce external feedback Ask student to write unintelligible answer Ask for repetition of a misunderstood word Give student a limited number of choices from which to pick answer Repeat that part of student’s statement that is understood

55 Sample Therapy Targets
NOTES CONTINUED Vocabulary Learn vocabulary from content material in classroom Review old words at regular intervals Must know “sound” of new words, not just look Enlist parent support and reinforcement Expand language with multiple meanings, synonyms, idioms, and antonyms Use high interest words from board games, sports, or hobbies Use old words to learn new “instruction” words For the Teacher • Repeat new or important words and write them on board. Require the student to keep a simple dictionary of new words. • Define words by using them in a sentence • Give list of vocabulary to support staff • Select new vocabulary from academic material and use them as spelling words. • Ensure that directions are understood • Encourage child to give specific answers Capitalize on spontaneous learning situations within the classroom to enhance vocabulary development Ask related open ended questions requiring more than a "yes" or "no" answer Provide opportunities for written and oral/signed use of new vocabulary. The student who is hearing impaired must see and/or hear a new word many times before it is learned. Relate indefinite time concepts such as "long ago" and "next time" to more easily understood, concrete time concepts so they will take on real meaning. Avoid the concurrent teaching of words that look or sound alike, e.g., want and went. A student who is D/HH will initially find it easier to read words that are very different both to look at and to hear. Familiarize the student with the vocabulary and phrases that refer to language, such as Letter, Sound, Word, Big/small letters, Leave a space, Begins/ends with, First/last, Beginning/end, Same/different, Right/left, Up/down Use games like Scattegories®, Pictionary®, Outburst®, Boggle®, etc. Use graphic organizers such as word maps.

56 Vocabulary Use a description line to define new words by comparing them to known vocabulary: Love Admire Like Tolerate Ignore Hate Also new vocabulary can be compared and contrasted with other words based on spelling, parts of speech, or categories.

57 Teach multiple meanings when developing new vocabulary.

58 Sample Therapy Targets
Speech Reception (Listening) Speech Production Vocabulary Morphology and Syntax Pragmatics Morphology and Syntax Expand simple forms Self-monitor morphological endings Recognize obligatory context and respond accordingly Produce audible morphological endings Increase flexible use of grammatical forms For the Teacher Check comprehension of lecture and instruction Paraphrase into simpler form Write assignments on board Give different grade for content and grammar Pragmatics Learn rules of conversational appropriateness Adapt speech to the listener Learn a variety of ways to ask, state, and direct Learn Colloquialisms and slang Adhere to obligatory contexts Explain “teacher talk” style at the beginning of the year Insist that the student maintain topic Require child to assume responsibility for making himself or herself understood Insist on adherence to non-interruption rules

59 Environmental Modifications
Speak naturally Keep hands and books away from face Be sure your classroom is well lighted Use visual aids whenever possible Speak naturally Use a natural speaking voice at a moderate pace. Use of exaggerated mouth movements, extremely slow or quick rates of speaking, or overly loud speech destroys the natural rhythm and intonation of speech. Keep your face in full view of the student as much as possible. Teachers should be aware that the similarity of some words on a person’s lips, such as the words mat and bat, can make these words hard to distinguish. Be prepared to provide clarification. Linguistically complex sentences, because of the language demands of the task, are more difficult for the student to speechread. Provide prior exposure to content-specific vocabulary and frequently used phrases and sentences. Reduce or eliminate distracting physical features, such as a moustache or beard, and/or mannerisms, like moving around the room while instructing. Difficulty with speechreading increases with increased distance between teacher and student. Use visual aids whenever possible Manipulative material and visual representations provide a link between the hearing impaired student’s experiential knowledge and symbolic or abstract linguistic and cognitive information. Functional charts and graphs can be developed as new skills and concepts are introduced. Initially, real objects, pictures, and/or printed words can be used as visual aids until the student can interpret the information independently. Charts containing learned skills or concepts can be hung in the classroom or made into individual charts to be used as references during independent learning assignments. Cognitive/Linguistic strategies, such as networking, semantic mapping, charts (see attached), and/or outlining should be taught directly, but gradually developed into independent use by the student across the curriculum. These frameworks can provide the hearing impaired student with the means of becoming an independent learner. Be sure your classroom is well lighted Light should be on speaker’s face and not in the student’s eyes. Avoid standing in front of windows while teaching. If teaching while showing a film or slide presentation, 1) give the student information in advance, 2) provide the student with a manuscript of the film that can be used to prepare the student to view the film and/or used as a review, 3) use a captioned film, and 4) save instructional comments until the end of the film.

60 Environmental Modifications
Provide preferential seating at the front and to the side of the class Be aware the student may not hear bells and alarms Keep background noise to a minimum Provide preferential seating at the front and to the side of the class, BUT . . . Be flexible. Consider 1) the auditory and visual reception needs of the student, 2) the type of communication system used, particularly one requiring an interpreter, 3) the type of amplification used by the student, and 4) the communicative interactions demanded by the activity. Allow seating to change according to the situation. Be aware the student may not hear bells and alarms Keep background noise to a minimum The noise levels in a standard classroom should not exceed 30 to 35 decibels (dB) if optimal learning is to take place. Research has demonstrated that when students are present in an average kindergarten room, the mean noise level is about 69 dB; elementary classrooms about 59 dB; and high school classrooms approximately 62 dB. Classrooms should be analyzed for sources of sound. If possible, carpets and draperies should be installed. Dropped ceilings and acoustic tiles on the ceilings and walls will reduce noise and reverberation. Windows should be closed as much as possible. Solid doors should be used to ease the amount of noise that comes into the room. The door should be sealed with weather stripping and kept closed to eliminate hallway noises. The student’s classroom should be one located on the side of the school away from the playground, traffic noise, and trains, and be far from the gym, cafeteria, and bathrooms. Classroom should be acoustically separate from adjacent rooms. A classroom with a sliding wall, or one in which several classes meet in the same room will be impossible for a hearing impaired student. Distance between the listener and the speaker has a significant impact on how speech is received. An FM microphone should be approximately 4½ away from the teacher’s mouth.

61 Instructional Modifications
Be sure you have the student’s attention Check for understanding; ask open ended questions Repeat the responses of other students. Be sure you have the student’s attention Check for understanding; ask open ended questions Repeat the responses of other students Hearing impaired students have difficulty hearing and locating peer speakers in the classroom. Repeat questions and comments from other students, have students identify themselves before speaking, and/or pass the FM microphone from speaker to speaker as needed. The hearing impaired student may be unaware that he/she has misunderstood classroom instructions or exchanges, and may not seek additional information or clarification. Ask students to repeat or paraphrase instructions rather than simply asking if they understand. Assign a “buddy” to relay incidental classroom information that may be given over the loudspeaker, or during transition times or independent work routines. Spoken and unspoken cuing mechanisms used by teachers and students can be analyzed and explained to the hearing impaired student. Devise opportunities for hearing and hearing impaired students to practice communicating with each other. Hearing impaired students often rely on other visual information, such as situational clues, facial expressions, body language and gestures, and/or shared knowledge to make conjectures about incomplete information. Avoid or explain “mismatches” between the visual setting and the speechread message, such as when interjecting information about a current event related to the topic. When the student has difficulty comprehending the spoken message, the speaker should repeat it before rewording it. Remember that factors other than speechreading skill (e.g. language ability) can affect the student’s interpretation of the information. Teach the use of an assignment notebook Introduce new topics with short key words When introducing new concepts, 1) provide concrete learning activities, 2) relate the new concepts to their previous experience, or 3) give them background knowledge. This provides a conceptual foundation for new information. Activities can be an actual experience, a role-playing activity, or a class discussion about related background information. The main goal should be to establish the student’s language and knowledge base for the new information. Pre-teaching activities, conducted either in the class or resource room, should assist the students in establishing the knowledge base needed to understand new information as well as exposing them to new terms and concepts. Prior to being taught new material, students need to have both a list of vocabulary words and an outline of the content to be taught during the lesson, either written on the board or presented in a handout. If students are working with resource teachers, providing a copy of the handout helps to integrate the students’ lessons. Post-teaching sessions can be used to review key concepts, clarify misconceptions, organize information, and expand the students’ knowledge of content or skills emphasized during the lesson. Teach the use of an assignment notebook Introduce new topics with short key words Be aware that hearing levels may decrease if the student has a cold

62 Instructional Modifications
Allow the student breaks; attending to listening is tiring Repeat and rephrase instructions Older students might need a note taker Allow the student breaks; attending to listening is tiring Repeat and rephrase instructions Because one cannot assume that students with hearing losses possess the same language and conceptual bases as their hearing peers, it is beneficial to hearing impaired students if teachers frequently monitor these students’ comprehension of hey vocabulary words and concepts presented during instruction and independent reading assignments. Sometimes students are unaware of comprehension difficulties and lack of strategies for requesting clarification or additional information. Rephrase sentences using familiar vocabulary and less complex sentences. Reduce the complexity of the tasks. Provide an experiential frame of reference. Provide response choices. Establish the students’ knowledge base, and/or analyze the students’ difficulty, then reteach information based on this knowledge. Reduce the amount of extraneous information present by highlighting main points contained in the text, such as providing an outline or diagram. Control the amount and complexity of new vocabulary words being introduced. Simplify grammar by using simple sentence structures and reduce the use of complex sentences, especially when introducing new information. Construct paragraphs so that the main topic is clearly presented and the supporting details are correctly sequenced. Assign a buddy to the student to help them alert to bells and announcements The buddy system is a support service that can assist both the classroom teacher and the hearing student. Given the student-teacher ratio, it can be an impossible situation for the teacher to keep the hearing impaired student totally informed about changes in routine, announcements made over the intercom, unexpected events like visitors, or incidental occurrences such as students’ reactions to a loud outburst of noise in the adjoining classroom. Repetition of directions can also interrupt class procedures. In such situations, a designated student – a buddy – would provide the hearing impaired student with the required information. Additionally, providing hearing impaired students with opportunities for being buddies to other students in the class allows them to be contributing members of the class. Such a system can foster class spirit, while encouraging sensitivity for others. Establish a peer support or buddy system to assist both you and the student

63 Instructional Modifications
NOTES CONTINUED Older students might need a note taker Because the hearing impaired student has to attend to the teacher or interpreter visually, taking notes can become a frustrating and futile experience. A hearing student, who is capable of taking complete, well-organized, legible notes, can be a notetaker for the student with a hearing loss. Prior to initiating this support service, the notetaker should be provided with guidelines and materials for accomplishing the task. Furthermore, the notetaker should be instructed about the procedures that produce quality class notes. Quality peer notetakers provide the mainstreamed hearing-impaired student with an important service that enables him or her to obtain more information from class instruction. Peer tutors should demonstrate sensitivity and knowledge to work with hearing impaired students in a positive manner. Hearing-impaired students also need to be given the opportunity of being a peer tutor. Guidelines and appropriate procedures should be established and clearly understood by the students. This approach can become a powerful means for promoting learning and creating a positive interpersonal climate in the classroom. .Cooperative Learning Cooperative learning is a technique in which students jointly work on learning activities and are rewarded based on the group’s performance. This technique has three essential components: a task structure, a reward structure, and an authority structure. Teachers are required to be trained in this technique so that they learn the logistics needed to set up the structure and to assist students to learn the process. The cooperative learning approach can facilitate constructive interactions among the students, promote growth in learning, and foster positive interaction between hearing and hearing impaired students in a learning activity that can be rewarding to the whole class.

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