My kindergarten students are the best around! Our school is a neighborhood school, with around 400 students. Most of my students walk or are bussed to school and qualify for free or reduced-price lunch. I have a quite diverse group of 25 kids, with many ethnic and cultural backgrounds represented. Most of my students do not have preschool experience but come to school eager to learn! All of my students love school, so I try to make it exciting and fun for them!
In my kindergarten classroom, I have the honor of teaching a student who is deaf. Along with an interpreter, we teach all of our typical learning students sign language and how to communicate with kids who are hard of hearing or deaf. It has been an incredible experience!
One of the difficulties with teaching students about being deaf or hard of hearing is explaining hearing aids.
Sometimes, the student who wears the hearing aids is embarrassed about them. And the typical students might think they are strange. I want to build empathy and confidence in my students (hearing or not) to accept and understand that hearing aids are a magical tool to help people.
I will use the American Doll (who comes with a removable hearing aid) to show the students how the hearing aid works and how the doll (through the accompanying book) teaches students that just because she has a hearing loss doesn't mean that she can't do what everyone else does. The story line is amazing and inspiring!
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