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ChristineM
10-17-2011, 12:25 PM
Anyone else out there have a child who wears hearing aids? We are struggling with reading here. They are only behind by 1/2 a year or so but I hate seeing my kids cry 2-3 times a week because they can't get the words. They can't hear the sounds so they typically memorize the words. We are using HOP, which they enjoy, reading is just incredibly hard.

Any help/advice would be appreciated.

MelanieMeadors
10-17-2011, 04:54 PM
I had a 13 yo foster son who was very hard of hearing. He didn't have hearing aids until he was 11--needless to say, he had some severe learning deficits! But we used Reading Reflex, and I taught him how to read from scratch that way (he had memorized a couple of words, but really, had no concept that letters made sounds, very specific sounds). It worked WONDERFULLY, we used it in the exact way they advised in the book. Using that method also helped with his speech which was almost unintelligible. When he left our home six months later, he could speak and read. It was a lot of work, and the key was to keep him motivated with a LOT of praise. We went very slowly with the Bob books, to keep him motivated and to make him feel like he was progressing. The speech therapist was astounded by how much progress he made in such a short time.

I think especially since they are a bit frustrated, you might do well to go back to the beginning and teach not just the sounds but where in the mouth those sounds are made (lips with breath, lips stopping breath, front of tongue, back of tongue, etc), and use a mirror so they can watch you and themselves make the sounds, it just makes it more real, gives it another level of senses to work with, to help them remember the sounds.

Hopefully this helps some!

Melanie

Shannon P
10-17-2011, 04:55 PM
Both my boys have hearing loss, one severe and one moderate to severe. Both wear hearing aids and use spoken English as their first language.

First, do your kids use spoken English or a signed language as their first language? Are their receptive and expressive language levels appropriate for their ages?

You mention your kids not hearing the sounds. Are there frequencies that are inaudible to them? Are they getting all the amplification they can? Do their aided thresholds and speech recognition scores allow them to hear speech? My older son doesn't hear as much in the upper speech frequency range. His aided thresholds aren't in the speech banana because his recruitment leaves too narrow a margin for amplification. He makes up for it with speechreading.

How do your kids do at strictly auditory tasks? Can they identify the first sound in a spoken word? Can they put /c/, /a/, and /t/ together to get 'cat'? Can they pull the word 'stop' into its 4 individual sounds? Identifying and manipulating the individual sounds of language is a necessary skill before being able to associate those sounds with a complex code to represent them. I had to spend a lot of extra time on these skills before attempting reading instruction.

There is no such thing as "being behind". By what measure are your kids behind? Even hearing kids progress at different rates and in spurts. Throw the artificial timeline out the window and teach them where they are.:group:

ChristineM
10-17-2011, 08:22 PM
Both of my children use spoken English and all their levels are age appropriate.

They can identify each individual letter sound.

Their amplifications were just changed so they are properly amplified for speech.

(Not hearing the sounds)...I was referring to when a word is said. When I break down each individual sound they are able to say and hear all the proper sounds. It is when a word is said all pieced together that they miss the sounds and putting it all together is extremely difficult for them

The high frequencies are the issue...'s', 'th', 'f' etc.

(How do your kids do at strictly auditory tasks? Can they identify the first sound in a spoken word?) - They can identify the beginning and ending sounds

(Can they put /c/, /a/, and /t/ together to get 'cat'?) this is where they struggle

(Can they pull the word 'stop' into its 4 individual sounds?) not consistently

(There is no such thing as "being behind") I know this but my son really struggles with this concept - he has a friend 1 year younger than he is that reads beyond his level and that really bothers him. My daughter's best friend is reading beyond her level as well. Since they know this they are really bothered that they aren't at the same 'level' and I know when I'm discouraged I fall into this same trap. It is just something my kids and I will have to continue to discuss - their level is fine even if it doesn't match someone elses.

Shannon P
10-18-2011, 01:41 AM
Their amplifications were just changed so they are properly amplified for speech.
If they haven't been hearing speech sounds until now and haven't been hearing them for long, it will take them a while to incorporate and recognize those sounds. Every time my older ds has his aids reprogrammed we go through a miserable "CANYOUHEARMENOW" phase.


The high frequencies are the issue...'s', 'th', 'f' etc.
Ugh. Those are always the tough ones. My older ds can only hear /s/ in one ear, even with his hearing aids. It might help to do some work with minimal pairs, words that differ by only one sound (regardless of spelling.) I worked up to using minimal pairs that differed only by high frequency sounds. I sometimes used nonsense words when I ran out of real words. I conducted this work more like speech therapy, using auditory verbal methods, than reading lessons.


(Can they put /c/, /a/, and /t/ together to get 'cat'?) this is where they struggle
(Can they pull the word 'stop' into its 4 individual sounds?) not consistently
These auditory skills are key to learning to read. Another useful skill is being able to manipulate sounds, such as saying 'tree' without the /r/ sound or adding a /k/ to the beginning of 'lap'. My sons could not do these activities strictly auditorily. I had to assign each sound to a plain wooden block and manipulate them accordingly.


They can identify each individual letter sound.
I used Reading Reflex as a basis for my kids. It focuses on sounds, not letter names, since there is not a reliable, consistent 1:1 correspondence. It is a shift in thinking from the ABC's. They elaborate on the theory behind this practice in the book. It takes a while to read those chapters, but I found it important to know the reasons behind the procedures, so I could do them correctly. The activities were scripted and easy, and the book includes error correction procedures.


I know this but my son really struggles with this concept - he has a friend 1 year older than he is that reads beyond his level and that really bothers him. My daughter's best friend is reading beyond her level as well. Since they know this they are really bothered that they aren't at the same 'level' and I know when I'm discouraged I fall into this same trap. It is just something my kids and I will have to continue to discuss - their level is fine even if it doesn't match someone elses.
Everyone with special needs kids understands this. It's difficult to keep kids from comparing. Your ds's friend is a year older, so of course he will read better with more experience. It's not a fair contest. Maybe if you make a portfolio of their skills at the beginning of the school year, they can see how much progress they made at the end of the year. It helps give them the bigger picture and helps them appreciate their own progress.

ChristineM
10-18-2011, 10:00 AM
oops..I meant 1 year younger.

ChristineM
10-18-2011, 10:04 AM
oops...I meant 1 year younger not older.

Shannon P
10-19-2011, 01:46 PM
It's hard to keep kids from comparing and keep their esteem up. There is generally less comparison in home school than in public schools so your kids are lucky their skills aren't on display. Different programs use different sequences and minor gaps of less than a year can often be explained away. My kids have compared themselves to their friends in math, but would never had known if they were a few months behind in reading.

Since your kids are already comparing, maybe they need a wider variety of comparison points. My dd didn't learn to read until she was 9yo and she didn't have hearing loss to deal with. I've known hearing homeschooled kids that didn't learn to read until they were 11yo. Everyone learns at their own rate. There is no right or wrong rate, unless it's too fast for them.