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Strategies to Improve Hearing

Instructor: Sarah Mills

Sarah is an educational freelance writer and has taught English and ESL in grades k-12 and college. She has a master's degree in both Literacy and TESOL.

In this lesson, teachers will learn strategies for helping students with hearing impairments improve hearing. The lesson will also cover some common accommodations to help maximize learning for students with hearing impairments in your classroom.

Students with Hearing Impairments

Students with hearing impairments can face challenges with listening comprehension in school. So much of what occurs in an educational environment, from conversations in the cafeteria to instructions in the science lab, relies on the ability to hear.

To help students with hearing impairments achieve academic success, it's important to teach them skills and techniques to compensate for potential learning barriers. Let's look at some strategies that can help students with hearing impairments maximize their learning experience.

Active Listening

One of the best ways to help support students with hearing impairments is to teach them active listening strategies. Active listening strategies require students to focus and pay attention to any verbal input they receive. Here are some examples of helpful active listening techniques:

Pay Attention

Teach students to look at the person who is speaking. A person can provide many non-verbal cues about the topic, including facial expressions, gestures, and body language. Watch the speaker's lips closely to determine what is being said.

Determine the Context

If you provide students with lecture notes ahead of time, encourage them to review the notes in advance. Give students reading assignments from the textbook for homework prior to your lecture on the topic. Understanding the subject matter will help them make sense of new information and interpret it in the right context.

Reduce Noise

Background noise and other distractions can interfere with the student's ability to pay attention. Hearing aids are excellent personal amplification devices, but unfortunately, they amplify all sounds, including student chatter and noises emitted from fluorescent lights and electronic equipment.

Work with your students who have hearing impairments to determine ideal accommodations that should be made to the learning environment to promote active listening. Also, teach students to make other teachers aware of their environmental learning needs.

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