By: Elsa Rivera Cruz
Bataan National High School
What inspires you? There are several things that make us inspired- seeing other people overcome adversity of life, seeing other people accomplishing great things and hearing inspirational quotes from great people. However, what has inspired me is when I hear the sound of these silent people - the Hearing -Impaired Students
When I decided to teach them, I was hesitant and puzzled if they can make it or not and if they can, how could they do that? Another query was on my part. How can I teach these kind of people with hearing loss? Students who are having difficulty paying attention or following directions , deprived of oral communication or having speech difficulties is likely to be a failure. I considered these situations as a learning challenge. "It is really difficult and very challenging", I thought. But I ended up not only as a classroom teacher of hearing-impaired students but also as an adviser.
In communicating with them, I discovered little by little that they are just the normal students whom I used to teach. There are lots of things I learned from them such through sign-language their personal attributes, their emotions and even their simple thoughts.
As the learning process took place I realized the following:
1. They are visual learners- they are reading my lips and my facial expressions, so I should not talk at the same time that I write something on the board.
2. Don't Yell- they don't like a force or vibration from the sound so I should speak in a normal tone.
3. Use lots of pictures and graphic organizers- because they are visual learners.
4. Repetition is the key- they are concrete learners and often have difficulty with abstract concepts. We have to ease into such concepts.
5. Every lesson is a language lesson - they always lack language skills, so every word counts. Label objects in the classroom and even to your daily lesson to help and have them understand word/s and spelling.
You may never hear the students's loud silence but when you try to listen and understand them you can penetrate into their souls. They have good stories to tell. They are like the normal youth who are vibrant and full of hope so, let us try to hear their silent sound let us not weary in accompanying them in their journey to literacy. Educating them is a mission to fulfill.
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