Speaking Skills Crucial For Hearing Impaired Children In The Classroom

Summarized by Alyssa Smith, staff writer

Children with hearing loss and their peers with normal hearing are on a level playing field academically; however, things like classroom participation, group work, and social integration have proven to be more complex situations for children with hearing loss. These children, even with devices like cochlear implants and hearing aids, may miss information which can cause them to feel “left out.”

Prof. Tova Most of Tel Aviv University’s Jaime and Joan Constantiner School of Education and her colleagues designed a study to examine such social interaction and feelings of being left out by children with hearing loss in a classroom comprised of normal hearing students. The results indicate that a child’s successful integration into the classroom depends on his or her level of speech intelligibility. The higher level of speech intelligibility (or clearness), the more successful the child will be in integrating into the classroom, therefore avoiding feeling lonely or left out.

Children with hearing loss are now able to improve their spoken language because of modern technology as well as more access to auditory information. Therefore, these children need to use these tools as a means to develop and strengthen their speaking skills. Parents and teachers of children with hearing loss can help these children develop their speech. If children with normal hearing are exposed to those with hearing loss, they will have the opportunity to become more open and accepting of those with hearing loss, which will benefit both groups of students.

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