Learning How to Teach Children With Disabilities With A Gift of Words for the DeafIt is a sign of great news that there are new approaches to teaching about how to teach children with disabilities how to read, including how to develop an effective paper topic. The lessons that are included in the latest edition of the National Reading Panel's (NRP) A Gift of Words for the Deaf have proved to be a valuable tool for educating students and their parents in how to teach children with disabilities. With this in mind, here are some tips for teachers and parents on how to use this resource:
Assess the level of participation in the class. For a hearing child, read the material aloud and ask the teacher to make the reading noises that can be identified as they are heard by deaf people. To ensure that the experience of the deaf person is the same as his or her hearing peers, read the material aloud, without making any sound. See if the hearing parent or teacher is participating in the entire reading session. In the case of a deaf person who is deaf-blind, read aloud from the A Gift of Words for the Deaf.
Consider using audio material as the main reading material. There are signs, speech balloons, and words (called phonemes) that are important in teaching how to teach children with disabilities. A deaf person will not know where to place these sounds when they are read, so when the teacher makes the sounds, the deaf person should understand what they mean and participate in the discussion. In other words, reading material that has accompanying music (such as an audio CD) provides additional opportunities for the hearing parent to contribute to the reading experience.
Attach a caption on the board. The NRP suggests creating a grid on the board with specific shapes. Then arrange the shapes in a sequence of letters and numbers. Using letters as the major shapes and numbers as the minor shapes provides the most comprehensive reading curriculum for a deaf person. In order to be included in the classroom discussion, a student must recognize and utilize the shapes and letters.
Ask multiple choice questions. Teach the students to participate in the class discussions by asking them to answer the multiple choice questions. Students need to learn to apply the skills they are learning in this context.
Have the students listen to and visualize audible pictures. This is particularly important if there are visual cues that cannot be understood by the deaf person. It helps them to visualize the pictures that are used as a text. When using visuals, it is important to make sure that the child is involved in the conversations by reading out loud.
Have the students use visual aids. To encourage comprehension of information, show a picture that is related to the material that has been read aloud. The teacher can also use a pencil and paper to draw a diagram that will help the student to see what the teacher is trying to say.
The suggestions given above are just a few of the ways to make learning about how to teach children with disabilities more engaging. When using NRP materials, use specific techniques to engage students. For example, when the hearing parent reads a letter aloud, it is important to have the deaf child see and hear it, but it is also important for the child to learn how to read it.