It’s a new school year for your child, which may mean a new teacher, a new classroom and even a new school but for certain it will mean lots of new learning opportunities! So, how can you be sure that your child and his educational team are ready?
Consider the following suggestions to help make the most of your child’s hearing at school and get everyone involved on the right path this school year:
- Summer Services: Gather any final reports or evaluations your child may have received over the summer and have copies ready for the child’s teacher and/or educational team.
- Individualized Education Plan (IEP): Take a moment to review the IEP that was likely completed in the spring of the previous school year and verify that the services and accommodations listed in the document are still appropriate for your child.
- Back to School Programming Appointment with the Audiologist: It is always a good idea to return to your child’s managing audiologist and have a thorough evaluation of your child’s hearing device(s). This could include re-programming of the sound processor(s), visual inspection of your child’s equipment, formal speech perception testing and aided sound field testing.
- Back to School Equipment: Prepare a special backpack or travel case that contains extra working equipment and batteries that your child will leave at school in the classroom. See our back to school supply list for suggestions.
- Teacher In-service: After sending the initial introduction letter or email to the teacher about your child’s hearing loss, set up a time to meet with the teacher and educational team. This meeting can center on reviewing basic operation and troubleshooting of your child’s hearing device(s), outlining the materials in the back to school equipment pack and verify that the primary teacher or aid is comfortable performing a listening check.
- Classroom Set Up: Where will your child be seated? Discuss how the classroom desks and stations will be arranged so that you can make any special accommodations that are needed for your child.
- Classroom Acoustics: Work with your classroom teacher and/or educational audiologist to verify that classroom acoustics are appropriate for a child with a hearing impairment.
- Wireless Mini-Microphone 2+ or Personal FM: Will your child use a Wireless Mini-Microphone 2+ or an FM/Roger system in the classroom? Review with the child’s classroom teacher the times when your child should be using the Wireless Mini-Microphone 2+ or FM/Roger system and how to connect and use the device/system with the sound processor(s).
- Consider a Peer Mentor: If this is a new class or even a new school for your child, consider asking the teacher to assign a “mentor” (another student). This student would be a “buddy” and would assist your child throughout the day while navigating through the new surroundings and the new schedule.
- Communication: Consider how often and what type of communication will occur between yourself as the parent and your child’s educational team. Take a moment to discuss with the teacher(s) how best to communicate with your child and tell them what your expectations are for communication. An idea you might consider would be to create a communication notebook that would go back and forth between home and school.
We wish your child a very successful school year!
For additional resources to help your child build listening and language skills for success in the classroom, visit our Communication Corner section for School-Age Children.
For more information and resources to help your child with hearing loss, visit IWantYouToHear.com.