As a teacher, sooner or later you come across children who need you to educate yourself in order to fully support them. Myself? I taught more children like this than most, and developed a few ideas that helped me to provide more easily for them. Hopefully, the ones I’m about to share will help your own child, and their teacher!
If you’re the parent of a hard of hearing child, like any parent you want the best for them, but you might also worry about any problems they might have due to their hearing loss. I was told this by parents time and again while teaching various hard of hearing children, but there are plenty of ways to put your mind at ease.
For example, simply talking to the other parents about your child’s hearing loss can go a long way towards ensuring as many people as possible can help when help is needed. Not only that, but it reassures you that their time at school, or even at a friend’s house after school, will go by without a hitch. So don’t shy away from all the party invites! Embrace them and educate the other parents, who are often more than willing to help or keep an eye out for you.
As for school itself, your child is one of many pupils under the responsibility of their teacher, a responsibility all teachers take very seriously. In all probability, your child’s teacher is as anxious as you are to make sure nothing disrupts your child’s day, or their learning! It’s in the best interests of both you and the teacher to have a detailed discussion to inform them of any requirements well in advance, so they can get any training they need or any equipment in place.
One of the things you’re probably worried about (many of the parents I dealt with were) is ensuring your child doesn’t run out of batteries during a school day! This is probably the easiest fix, as you may well already be getting your child into the habit of carrying spare batteries. All you need to do here is give a pack to the teacher to keep with them, just in case your child forgets theirs on the one day they end up needing them! You could even sticky tape them to the ‘cheatsheet’ you made earlier, to make sure it’s all organised and ready.
Finally, there’s a crucial step that some teachers might know from previous experience, but others may not. Make sure your child’s teacher knows how to change their hearing aid battery, and show them if they don’t. I have certainly struggled with this in the past – there are so many more different designs than before nowadays!
Above all, remember that their teacher cares and worries about your child’s education as much as you do, and that in all likelihood, your child’s school experience will be a happy one!