Staff Guidance – Hearing Impairment


* Types of Hearing Impairment
* The impact of hearing loss on teaching and learning
* How to support language and listening
* Social and Emotional issues
* Deaf Awareness and Class Practice
* Nursery
* Primary
* Secondary
* The Role of the Hearing Impairment Service
* Contact Details of Hearing Impairment Service (ELC)
* Relevant Contacts Hearing Impairment and Deafness
* Resources available from Hearing Impairment Service
* Appendix 1.
* Appendix 2

Inclusive Practice.


Hearing Impairment of any sort can have a significant impact on the education of a child or young person.

Types of Hearing Impairment.

There are a number of different types of hearing loss, which you may encounter in class. These are:

* Conductive.
* Sensori-neural.
* Mixed.
* Unilateral or bilateral.

These losses can be temporary, permanent or progressive.

Conductive hearing loss.

* Glue Ear – Temporary/permanent.
o This can be associated with colds, viruses and ear infections, which can lead to fluctuating levels of ‘glue’ behind the ear drum causing a possible drop in hearing*.
* Disease of the pathway of sound – Temporary/permanent.
* Deafness associated with syndromes, (Treacher Collins, Downs, Beckwith Wiedeman) – mostly permanent.

* This condition can affect children, young people and adults at any time in their lives. This can take up-to six weeks to clear.

Sensori-neural hearing loss.

* Permanent and can be progressive.
o Descriptors of Mild, Moderate, Severe and Profound are given in relation to the degree of hearing loss.

Mixed hearing loss.

* This can be a combination of sensori-neural and conductive hearing losses.

Unilateral or bilateral hearing loss.

* Hearing loss can affect either one or both ears.

Auditory Intervention.

* In relation to the above hearing losses children may or may not be fitted with hearing aids or other audiological equipment.

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The Impact of hearing loss on learning and teaching.

Any type of hearing loss may cause an interruption in the education of any child or young person.

* Learning language may be delayed.
* There may be underlying difficulties as yet undetected.

Vocabulary acquisition.

* Language may not reflect their cognitive ability.
* Gaps in vocabulary.

Accessing the curriculum.

* May have poor use and understanding of general and curricular language.

Gathering information.

* Access to what is said around them -may not always be able to catch contributions from classmates. Needs teacher/adult to repeat what has been said.
* Peripheral learning.
* Incidental information and ‘hidden agendas’.
* May not always be able to keep up with the speed of the delivery of the lesson.
* Difficulty noticing and distinguishing information around them.
Auditory memory.

* Difficulty understanding and processing lists and sequential instructions which can have an impact on their learning.

Confidence and self-esteem.

* May have low self esteem and lack confidence due to poor language skills.
* Limited contact with other deaf children.

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How to support language and listening.

Auditory memory.

* Use visual prompts to help facilitate the learning of curricular rules and processes.
* Keep instructions bite size.

Visual learning.

* Visual prompts are helpful.
* Support with written information.
* Use pictorial educational aids.
* Enable lip-reading by facing the pupil.


* This is tiring and the pupil may need time out.
* Provide extra explanation or rewording.
* Use sign language if appropriate.


* Give eye contact.
* Provide a quiet environment with minimal distractions.
* Supply notes as pupils often find it difficult to attend to information and note take simultaneously.


* Repeat or rephrase questions or answers from peers to aid understanding.
* Keep listening sessions short.


* Pupils may have difficulty making themselves understood. Articulation, pronunciation and vocabulary may be poor.
* Be patient
* Home/school book useful for background information to cue you in to what has been said.

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Social and Emotional Issues

Confidence can be influenced by any, or one, or a combination of the following issues;

* Lack of vocabulary to describe their feelings.
* Lack of self-esteem/self confidence.

Feelings of isolation.

* May be the only hearing impaired pupil in the school area.
* There may be perceptions of being bullied due to isolation and misunderstandings.
* Lack peer group.
* Difficulty following conversation (encourage friends and participation).
* Social vocabulary gap tends to widen with difficulties in keeping up with the latest idioms.
* Misunderstandings/missing out on conversations, jokes, not keeping up with social interactions etc.
* Frustration in misinterpretation of themselves and others, and also at being spoken for and not allowed a ‘voice’.
* Not being able to watch and attend to a physical task simultaneously e.g. writing, expressive arts, eating, watching TV, etc.
* Not being included in extra curricular groups, social groups, meetings, dances, etc.


* How they relate to deaf and hearing communities, and conflicts within those feelings.
* Confidence in wearing and using acoustic assistance devices.
* Social group acceptance.
* Perceptions of deafness.

How to help with social and emotional issues.

* Provide routine so pupils know what is happening each day.
* Encourage meaningful interactions because they may be treated differently because of their deafness. Social interaction will be difficult, e.g. break time and lunchtime.
* Offer Deaf awareness talks to class.
* Encourage inclusion in social groups.
* Support positive self esteem.
* Ensure success to promote confidence.
* Enable full inclusion and participation as a member of the school.

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Deaf Awareness and Class practice.

Class practice.

* Open classroom layout to support optimum acoustics (see P10).
* Provide appropriate seating arrangements – near front of class, able to see board, teaching area and rest of class.
* Arrange teaching area in quietest part of class, away from door or open area and windows.
* Set up a quiet area.

Teaching strategies.

* Keep light on your face so that the child can lip-read.
* Do not stand with your back to the window – this puts your face into shadow.
* Face the class, group or individual you are addressing.
* Do not talk when using the board as the child may miss information.
* Keep still when speaking to class, group or individuals.
* Speak clearly.
* Ensure the volume of your voice is appropriate for the hearing impaired pupil.

Visiting Speakers, Groups, Educational Visits, etc.

* Where possible provide advanced knowledge of visit to prepare speaker/group in use of audiological equipment, personal/loop system, where appropriate.
* Use school amplification equipment where possible.
* Pre-teach/prepare for content and vocabulary expected to use.
* Explain expected aims and outcomes.
* Give clear and appropriate instructions.
* Ensure inclusion of hearing impaired pupil – consider seating, lighting and acoustics.
* Give a brief summary at the end of each topic/activity.
* Make an overall summary with written notes.


* Cover as much wall space as possible.
* Use curtains and blinds.
* Use table coverings if appropriate.
* Carpeted areas are significantly quieter than linoleum areas.
* Gym/Games Halls are particularly difficult listening environments.
* Corridors and Social areas are also poor acoustically – pictures/posters on the walls help.
* Practical classrooms in Secondary schools are problematic with the additional machinery/equipment noise.
* Use of Loop/Soundfield* systems where available.
* Place hearing impaired pupils where possible in classrooms with good acoustics.

* See Appendix 1.


* Minimise working noise in classroom.
* Close door to noisy corridors.
* Ensure windows are closed if adjacent to noisy area or if noisy activity is taking place outside.
* Minimise scraping of chairs on floors.
* Discourage fidgeting and playing with pencils, etc, when teacher is addressing the class.
* Conduct group discussion work, if possible in a quiet area or out-with the class.
* Be aware that outdoor activities can cause difficult listening conditions.
* Ensure fire alarms etc are audible, or use pager.


Story time.

* Plan to seat pupils near the front without being too close so they can lip read.
* Engage child with story by showing pictures, using gestures or sign
* Reinforcement, going over the story later, follow up or linked activities
* Familiarise story/book/characters before story time.

Story sacks.

* Use visual prompts to support the story.
* Pre-teach/reinforce in the home/family environment.


* Use puppets.
* Engage in activity based dramas to support curriculum.
* Give opportunities to watch dramas/plays.


* Familiarise child with the rules of each activity.
* Demonstrate/explain each specific activity.
* Close off noisy areas for specific times – allowing quiet times.
* Stimulate and support communication.
* Use other pupils or staff as role models.

Snack time

* Use relevant vocabulary/pictorial vocabulary cues, e.g. menu, numbered seating.
* Take this as an ideal opportunity for adult interaction/conversation.
* Involve child in preparing and presenting snack – including relevant language.


Cueing in.

* Use pictorial support in all curricular areas.
* Give advanced warning of change of topic/subject/activity.
* Review previous lesson before beginning new days work.
* Summarise lesson/activity to ensure key points have been learned/understood.
* Work a structured/timetabled day.
* Give pictorial/written daily schedule.

Written information.

* Give appropriate written instructions at the child’s level.
* List key vocabulary – either on display or personalised.
* Bullet key learning points.
* Appropriately differentiate worksheets, planning sheets, vocabulary, etc.
* Write summaries of lessons – to allow reinforcement/discussion with specialist teachers and family.

Checking understanding.

* Ask open-ended questions.
* Check that pupil can repeat instructions.
* Ensure that child has started activity appropriately.
* Review progress during activity/lesson.

Peer support.

* Use pupil buddies systems with peers or older pupils.
* Support peer assessment.
* Allow group work/support.

Limit information/prioritise.

* Give salient points.
* Use key vocabulary.
* Annotate diagrams/information.
* Identify priority learning.
* Make appropriate level/differentiation of work.
* Make bulleted summaries.

New vocabulary – pre-teach/review.

* Introduce new vocabulary prior to beginning topic.
* Use spelling lists.
* Refer to and use books.
* Use games/activities to reinforce concepts.
* Make displays.
* Delegate relevant activities to support staff/specialist staff.
* Information to families to support pupil.

P.E, Drama, Music.

* Ensure full involvement of the pupil.
* Do a risk assessment.
* Ensure pupil has full understanding of task.
* Limit instructions and excessive explanations.
* Be aware of possible difficulties with acoustics and address (see p10).
* Give demonstrations.
* Use visual and/or gestured cues.
* Encourage role models.

End of topic assessments/tests and 5- 14 testing.

Begin gathering information as to the type of support required, at an appropriate level, for the hearing impaired pupil to bring in line with hearing peers.

* Where possible give advanced warning of tests/assessments.
* If administered in class ensure the class is quiet.
* Arrange separate, quiet accommodation for 5 – 14 testing where possible.
* Give additional time that is reasonable to finish the task/test – up to 50%.
* Monitor additional time required and record for evidence in future years.
* If required provide a reader and/or scribe.
* For 5 – 14 maths tests (if required) present the questions orally.
* For reading tests get the child to read out loud, and adult to read instructions to ensure that these are understood.
* If pupil uses sign language please ensure this is used during the test/assessment.
* Allow signing pupils to respond in sign with scribed answers.

Class support.

Either Support for Learning staff or VTHI could do the following:

* Note take.
* Scribe.
* Extend explanations and examples.
* Give visual examples.
* Help make Mind Maps.
* Give parallel examples of class work* (with explanations of vocabulary if required).
* Support group work.
* Alert pupil to attend teacher.
* Repeat other pupils’ responses/questions if required.
* Summarise lessons.

Home support.

* Communicate with home as a resource.
* Send work home with appropriate explanations of requirements.
* Ensure homework is understood on issue in class.
* Check that homework diary/organiser is written in for the correct date with any necessary explanation of work.

* See Appendix 2


Cueing in.

* Use pictorial support in all curricular areas.
* Give warning of change of topic/subject/activity.
* Review previous lesson before beginning new session work.
* Summarise lesson/activity to ensure key points have been learned/understood.
* Use a structured/timetabled day.
* Provide a written lesson schedule.

Written information.

* Give appropriate level of written instructions.
* List key vocabulary – either on display or personalised.
* Bullet key learning points.
* Appropriately differentiate worksheets, planning sheets, vocabulary, etc.
* Provide written summaries of lessons – to allow reinforcement/discussion with specialist teachers and family.

Checking understanding.

* Ask open-ended questions.
* Check that pupil can repeat instructions.
* Ensure that child has started activity appropriately.
* Do not assume previous knowledge.
* Review progress during activity/lesson.

Peer support/assessment.

* Use a buddy system.
* Allow for peer assessment.
* Support group work.

Limit information/prioritise.

* Use salient points. (Repetition).
* Give key vocabulary.
* Annotate diagrams/information.
* Identify priority learning.
* Ensure appropriate level/differentiation.
* Give bulleted summaries.
* Ensure conceptual understanding. Use open ended questioning.

Prior knowledge of lesson.

* Refer to previously taught material to cue in.
* Use specific references to known information.
* Issue vocabulary lists.
* Make handouts showing annotated diagrams of tools/equipment/flow diagrams
* Give brief summaries of future lessons.
* List expected aims and learning objectives.
* When using audio/visual materials make available for viewing/listening at least a week in advance.

New vocabulary – pre-teach/review.

* Introduce new vocabulary prior to beginning topic.
* Use spelling lists.
* Refer to and display books.
* Organise games/activities to reinforce concepts.
* Make displays.
* Delegate relevant activities to support staff/specialist staff.
* Inform families to support pupil.

Strategies for dictation/ copying from board.

Avoid using these teaching methods whenever possible.
It is very difficult for Deaf/Hearing Impaired pupils to copy/take dictation and to be expected to absorb and understand what they have written just on the basis of having written it.


* Consider giving them a typed version to look over as it is discussed.
* Do not give oral instructions/information while the pupil is copying from the board as they cannot do both at the same time and they will miss vital information.
* Bullet point information if possible – makes for easier note taking as most pupils find it difficult to take in more than one or two words at a time when they look up at the board so that they will be slower.
* Give an appropriate length of time to complete the task.


* Provide in advance.
* Allow time for pupil to read over before beginning activity/lesson.


* Consider providing a typed version for the pupil to follow allowing absorption of the material.
* Provide a vocabulary list for subject specific and technical words.
* Set an appropriate pace and monitor.
* Use a clear voice and repeat sections.
* Check understanding on a regular basis.


* Where ever possible evidence for assessment arrangements will be gathered in the Primary School and handed over to Support for Learning during transition to secondary school.
* Hearing Impaired pupils should be given predicted exam arrangements from S1 onwards. This will provide further evidence as they progress through school.
* Separate quiet accommodation should be available for all hearing impaired pupils.
* Deaf/Hearing Impaired pupils often need additional time to process written language..
* Additional time can be up to 50% of actual exam timing – this must be allocated in accordance with level of hearing loss and language requirements of pupil, not to be given 50% indiscriminately across all subjects.
* Depending on their abilities they may also need a reader and/or a scribe.
* If the pupil is a BSL Sign language user then they are entitled to have all of their assessments and examination papers signed to them by a communication support worker or teacher of the deaf with whom they work; their choice.
* These pupils are also entitled to use BSL sign language to answer their papers – on video format for submission. They may choose, to answer all, some or none of their answers in sign. Any combination is acceptable.
* Videos are sent to SQA for moderation of pupil and communicator.

Modern Languages.

* Listening skills – to be repeated at least twice either using CD or live voice.
* Use of language labs – earphones may not be suitable for all Hearing Impaired children depending on their loss. (Input leads can be obtained, through VTHI, to use as an alternative for some pupils).
* Vocabulary and pronunciation needs additional practice.
* Where possible any video or CD’s for listening activities should be offered to pupils to watch/listen to in advance, to familiarise them with the vocabulary.
* Pupils are entitled to sit listening assessments and exam components in separate quiet accommodation again with repetition either through CD or live voice.

Practical Classrooms.

* Do a risk assessment.
* Ensure that the Hearing Impaired pupil has understood all pertinent safety instructions.
* Do not issue instructions or information while equipment/machinery is in use.
* Be aware of additional background noise due to hard surfaces, which make for a difficult listening environment.
* Utilise quiet classrooms/areas for explanations of lessons and instructions before entering working area.
* Give written instructions/diagrams for reference.

P.E, Music and Drama.

* Do a risk assessment.
* Allow full involvement of the pupil (except where a Cochlear Implant is worn and safety advise is contra indicated.)
* Ensure the pupil has full understanding of task.
* Limit instructions and excessive explanations.
* Be aware of possible difficulties with acoustics.
* Give demonstrations and use role models.
* Use visual and/or gestured cues.

Class support.

Either Support for Learning staff or VTHI could do the following
* Note take/scribe.
* Extended explanations and examples.
* Give visual examples.
* Support Mind Map.
* Give parallel examples of class work* (with explanations of vocabulary if required).
* Use additional exam revision notes/references.
* Support group.
* Alert pupils to attend teacher.
* Repeat other pupils’ responses/questions if required.
* Summarise lessons.

Home support.

* Communicate with home as a resource.
* Send work home with appropriate explanations of requirements.
* Ensure homework is understood on issue in class.
* Check that homework diary/organiser is written in for the correct date with any necessary explanation of work.
*See Appendix 2.

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The Role of the Hearing Impairment Service.

The Role of Visiting Teacher for Hearing Impairment (VTHI)

Levels of support.

This may vary from pupil to pupil and school to school.

Support can be given
o Daily,
o Weekly,
o Monthly,
o Termly,
o Or annual basis.
o Visits can be arranged in class or out-with curriculum timetable.

Levels of support are based on age at diagnosis; hearing loss, use of available hearing and additional support needs.

Pupil Support.

* Removal to a quiet area maybe required from time to time, to support listening skills activities or follow-up work.
* Ensure most effective use/maintenance of audiological equipment.
* Provide a link between home and school as appropriate.
* Home teaching for pre-school children.
* Monitor hearing loss and response to audiological equipment.
* Support families to follow up work from school.
* Support with homework, revision and exam preparation.
* Advise and guide to alternative revision and exam preparation methods to be used in conjunction with subject teacher’s information.

* Support language skills required for tackling exam papers.
* Maintain email links to support monitored children to set up visits.
* Make email links with parents, allowing ease of communication between VTHI and parents to discuss any issues regarding their child.
Strategies used for in -class support.

* Team teaching.
* Note taking/scribing.
* Extended explanations and examples.
* Visual examples.
* Mind Map support.
* Parallel examples of class work*(with explanations of vocabulary if required).
* Support group, which includes Hearing Impaired pupil.
* Alert pupil to attend teacher.
* Repetition of other pupils’ responses/questions if required.
* Summarise lessons.
* Pupils who have tutorial time with Support for Learning due to reduced curriculum can be visited by VTHI in this time.
*See Appendix 2.
Staff support

* Annual In-Services/case conference offered regarding Deafness and Deaf awareness.
* Training in Deaf awareness can be focused on a specific pupil and their needs.
* Advice can be given on how to meet hearing impaired pupil’s needs on a day-to-day basis in class.
* Joint planning to allow for optimum support of Hearing Impaired pupil during visits.
* Liaison with all staff involved with pupil.
* Email links can be set up between staff and VTHI’s to allow communication.

Drop-in sessions.

A specific time allocated to a school when pupils and staff know the VTHI is in school.

* Staff can come to discuss pupil progress or support requirements.
* Pupils can come for help with class work, homework, and assessment/exam revision.
* Pupils can discuss concerns about schoolwork or social issues.
* VTHI’s can monitor of audiological equipment and pupil’s progress.


Pre-school ® Nursery ® Primary ® Secondary ® Further Education, Higher Education, Training or Employment.

In all stages of transition we will offer the following:

* Attend transition meetings within the educational establishment to advise.
* Parental discussion.
* Accompanied pre-visits.
* Discussion with staff about pupil’s needs, possible effects of their hearing impairment on their education and our involvement/role.
* In-service training to all staff.
* Information and guidelines for working with hearing impaired pupils.
* Enhanced transitions.
* Information gathering/observations of lessons.
* Assess/reassess levels of support.

Assessment and exams.
* We can administer end of topic assessments, 5 – 14 National Tests, other assessments, and formal SQA exams in secondary.
* Advice can be given about appropriate levels of Assessment Arrangements (AA’s) for hearing impaired pupils.
* Pupils using signed BSL can be supported by VTHI, who can administer assessments and SQA exams through sign language.
* Consultation about the suitability of levels and appropriateness of the test, assessment, or exam language can be undertaken with advice as to the problems the language content may provide for a Hearing Impaired pupil.

I.E.P. / I.A.P.

* VTHI’s should be involved in setting targets, particularly with language acquisition.
* If we are not able to attend then a submission of relevant information and possible target areas will be sent to the meeting as appropriate.

Co-ordinated Support Plan (C.S.P.)

* Involve the VTHI in the C.S.P process.
* Advice on updating as required.
* Attendance at review of plan.

Annual reviews.

* We endeavour to attend all Stage 2 meetings.
* If we cannot attend then with adequate notice we can submit a written report.

Early Years Group.

The Hearing Impairment Team attend termly meetings with other VTHI’s from across Edinburgh and the Lothians, and with Speech and Language Therapists specialising in hearing impairment.
We discuss: –
* Current information about Audiology and Audiological equipment,
* Cochlear Implants/Implantation,
* Sign Language use.
* Social issues.
* We also arrange termly outings for our Early Years pupils, 0 – 5 years. We chose a venue where the children have a chance to interact with other Hearing Impaired children. This also allows parents an opportunity to talk and discuss similar experiences/issues. We also encourage siblings under 5 to come along to enjoy the experience.

Joint In-service training.

At least once a year, the Hearing Impairment Team meet up with the other VTHI services from Edinburgh and the Lothians. We use these opportunities to discuss: –
* The latest developments in Audiology and Audiological equipment,
* Teaching and learning strategies,
* Issues around Deaf Awareness.
* Speech and Language issues.

Role of a Deaf Tutor.
* The Deaf Tutor works in homes, nurseries, primary and secondary schools, special schools/bases.
* The aim is to improve communication between deaf pupils and their parents, teachers support staff and peers, sometimes using BSL in order to achieve this, while teaching sign language along with Deaf awareness issues.

Introduction to BSL.

BSL stands for British Sign Language, which is recognised as a language in its own right and used mostly by Deaf people. Deaf people formed BSL hundreds of years ago. It has its own structure, grammar and syntax. Sign language is visual and expressive in nature. “Sign Along” was formed by hearing people in the last few years based on the signs used in BSL and Maketon. It is not a recognised language but is similar to BSL and much simpler for young children with learning difficulties to use. Young Deaf and hearing impaired children cannot hear every spoken work even through the use of audiological equipment, hearing aids or cochlear implants. Unlike their hearing peers they cannot pick up language by being around spoken language. Given this situation it is very important that they do not miss out on language development necessary for education. As sign language is a very visual language it maybe the answer to getting initial communication and language development started on which we can build.

The right form of communication

The Deaf tutor may teach either BSL or Sign Along depending on the child’s needs.

* Deaf or hearing impaired with no additional needs – BSL
* Deaf/hearing impaired with additional/complex needs – Sign Along.
* Communication disordered – Sign Along or BSL depending on the individual pupil.

Role with families.

* The Deaf Tutor can provide a role model for the parents of Deaf/Hearing Impaired children, as many may have not met a Deaf person before.
* Parents are able to ask questions and discuss issues, in relation to what their child may experience as they grow up, of which the Deaf Tutor, may have direct experience.
* Once the family have decided that they would like to use either BSL or Sign Along with their child the Deaf Tutor will arrange for either home visits or small parent group to teach the necessary signs to support their child.
* The Deaf Tutor will also support the parents signing development by providing videoed vocabulary lists for them to practice at home.
* Signing can be provided to parents, siblings and extended family as appropriate.

Role in Schools.

* Supporting pupils and staff by teaching ‘BSL’ or ‘Sign Along’ to help to improve communication between pupils, parents, teachers and support staff.
* Having a Deaf role model is beneficial for hearing impaired children as they may not have come in contact with a deaf adult, as most come from hearing families.
* It is also beneficial for parents to meet a Deaf adult who provides them with a role model and with whom they can discuss issues, which the role model themselves may have experienced, that their child may encounter as they grow up.
* Providing videoed vocabulary lists for practice of signs.

Educational Audiologist.

Nancy Newton is the Educational Audiologist and works from the Paediatric Audiology Department. Lauriston Place, Edinburgh.
Her role includes:
* Attending clinics for newly diagnosed/referred children.
* Participating in Hearing Aid Clinics where children’s hearing is routinely tested.
* Fitting, updating and maintaining hearing aids and other audiological equipment.
* Attending annual Hearing Aid Reviews
* Advising on acoustics in educational establishments and suitability of classrooms, etc.
* Liaising with VTHI’s about caseload children.
* Liaising with parents and pupils from pre-school to post education
* Working closely with the Health Board

Speech and Language Therapists.

We work with therapists who specialise in hearing impairment and local speech and language therapists.

* Involvement in I.E.P/I.A.P/C.S.P
* Joint working/assessing Hearing Impaired pupils.

Other Professionals.

Hearing Impaired pupils often work with a number of specialists with whom we try to have regular contact to provide optimum support.

These other professionals include:
* Physiotherapists.
* Educational Psychologists.
* Paediatric Audiologists – Hearing Aid Clinics.
* Paediatricians – as above and Paediatric Hearing Assessment Clinics.
* Cochlear Implant Centre staff (Kilmarnock, Manchester)

We can facilitate contact between professionals, teachers and parents.

Additional support.

* We advise on any issues about Hearing and Deafness that schools may include as part of the curriculum e.g. senses topic, alternative languages and society.
* Where possible we are able to provide an In-service package for pupils/staff.
* We also have a ‘Large Ear’ model and books about hearing and deafness, which we give out on loan, for short periods, as teaching aids.

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Contact Information for Hearing Impairment Service.

Eleanor Carnell – Full time VTHI.
Mobile – text/voice mail: 07792 273197

Kirsti Turner – Full time VTHI.
Mobile – text/voice mail: 07792 273174

Catherine Brookes – Part time VHTI

Lorna Telford – Part time VTHI

Brenda Young – Deaf Tutor
Minicom: 01620 827760

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Relevant Contacts for Hearing Impairment and Deafness.

The National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS)
The National Deaf Children’s Society is an organisation of parents, families and carers which exists to support parents in enabling their child to maximise their skills and abilities: and works to facilitate this process by every means possible.
Its fundamental role is to advocate for parents and carers as and when appropriate, whilst at all times ensuring the child’s welfare is paramount.

Scottish office.
187 – 189 Central Chambers
93 Hope Street
G2 6LD

Phone: 0141 248 2257 (voice)
Text: 0141 222 4476 (text)
Fax: 0141 248 2597
The National Deaf Children’s Society (NDCS)
London office.
15 Dufferin Street

Freephone: 0800 800 8880 (voice and text)
Fax: 020 7251 5020
Royal National Institute for the Deaf (RNID)
Aims to achieve a better quality of life for deaf and hard of hearing people. Does this by campaigning, lobbying, raising awareness of deafness, by providing services and through social, medical and technical research.

19 – 23 Featherstone Street

Telephone:0800 808 9000 Mon – Fri 9am – 5pm
Textphone: 0900 808 9000 helpline (free phone text)
Fax: 020 7296 8199

Anti bullying campaign

Support and advice for parents whose children have been bullied at school. How to support children, what steps to take with the school and within the educational system. Provides training for teachers and pupils.

185 Tower Bridge Road

Telephone: 020 7378 1446 Mon – Fri 11am – 3pm
Fax: 020 7378 8374

British association of teachers of the deaf (BATOD)

Professional association of teachers of deaf people. Provides information, advice, training and education and runs conferences and workshops.

175 Dashwood Avenue
High Wycombe
HP12 3DB

Telephone: 01494 464 190
Fax: 01494 464 190

British deaf association (BDA)

The objective of the BDA is in the interests of the Deaf community and to ensure greater awareness of their rights and responsibilities. It provides information and advice, organises conferences, undertakes research and campaigns on issues affecting deaf people.

1 – 3 Worship Street

Telephone: 020 7588 3520
Textphone: 020 7588 3529
Fax: 020 7588 3527

British educational communications and training agency (BECTa)

Information and advice for teachers, other professionals and parents about the use of ICT for learners with disabilities including deafness.

Science Park
Millburn Hill Road
Telephone: 02476 416 994
Fax: 02476 411 418

Council of the advancement of communication for deaf people (CACDP)

The primary ain of CACDP is to promote communication between deaf and hearing people of offering high quality nationally recognised assessments and accreditation in Sign Language and other forms of communication used by deaf people.

Durham University Science Pack
Block 4
Stockton Road

Telephone: 0191 383 115
Textphone: 0191 383 1155
Fax: 0191 383 7914

Cued speech association

A national charity that provides information, advice, courses and learning materials on Cued Speech. Cued Speech gives an exact visual representation of spoken language, which allows deaf children to develop their inner language and improve literacy and lip-reading. It clarifies the ambiguous lip-shapes of normal speech with eight hand shapes in position near the mouth.

9 Duke Street

Telephone: 01803 832 784
Textphone: 01803 832 784
Fax: 01803 835 311

Deaf education through listening and talking (DELTA)

DELTA is a nationwide support group of teachers and parents of deaf children. DELTA provides support, information and advice to guide parents in helping their children develop normal speech and to live independently within a hearing society. There are regional branches, which hold regular meetings and conferences. DELTA also runs courses for parents and families including summer schools for parents with hearing impaired children.

PO Box 20

Telephone: 01440 783 689
Fax: 01440 783 689
Forest Bookshop

Forest Bookshop supplies books and other resources on deafness and deaf issues. They have a wide range of books. Videos and CD-ROMS suitable for deaf children, and a wide range of resources for people learning sign language. Next day service, free 64 page colour catalogue and web-shopping site.

Unit 2
The New Building
Ellwood Road
GL16 7LE

Telephone: 01594 833 858 (voice and text)
Mon – Fri 9am – 5.30pm, Sat 9am – 4.30pm
Fax: 01594 833 446
Videophone: 01594 810 637

Letterbox Library

The Letterbox Library supplies story and reference books that provide support to children who are dealing with difficult and confusing issues. Books cover subjects such as divorce, a death in the family, bullying, or being made to feel ‘different’. The books aim to help children understand what is happening, and to find positive ways of coping.

71-73 Allen Road
Stoke Newington
N16 8RY

Telephone: 020 7503 4801 (voice)
Fax: 020 7503 4800

Stories in the Air

Their CD-ROM’s contain basic signs in British Sign Language (BSL). Parents, carers, teachers and support staff can use them to learn BSL along with the hearing impaired child. There are several topics to choose from. You chose the topics you want and follow the virtual reality person who appears on screen. They will offer a visual model of the signs for the word you select. The CD-ROM’s provide a great way to learn basic everyday BSL signs.

Stories in the Air
C/o Dunedin Multimedia
69 Merchiston Crescent
EH10 5AQ

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Resources available from Hearing Impairment Service.

Free CD ROMs (limited supply): –

* The Crowded Cottage
* BSL Dictionary
* BSL – Numeracy.
* BSL – Phonics
* BSL – Literacy
NDCS information booklets.

* Helping your deaf child to learn – For parents of pre-school and primary age deaf children.
* Understanding Deafness – An introductory guide.
* Hearing Aids – A guide.
* Deaf Friendly Nursery.
* Deaf Friendly Schools.
* Deaf Friendly School Pledge.
NBEdubuzz support for learning (will provide link here and will put on web page)

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Appendix 1.

Amplification in the classroom

Our pupils use a variety of hearing aids and equipment depending on their level of hearing loss and educational needs regarding access to sound.
The majority of our pupils wear Behind-the-ear hearing aids with a silicone ear mould, which allows them to access sounds and speech around them. The hearing aids range from mini (normally for babies) to power aids (for profoundly deaf), allowing an appropriate strength of signal depending on their level of loss.

With the advent of digital hearing aids the audiologists are now able to better match their hearing loss over the speech frequencies to allow them clearer access to sound as near to normal levels of hearing as possible.

Digital aids are also programmable, with settings for quiet environments, noisy backgrounds and speech and loop. The pupils who have these settings can control these, or for those with the most up to date technology the hearing aid will automatically change itself depending on the listening environment it detects.
Appendix 1 cont.

Some hearing impaired children with severe or profound losses who receive no benefit from conventional hearing aids can be offered and fitted with a cochlear implant. Cochlear implants are surgically implanted devices that stimulate the cochlea directly to allow access to sound and speech.
The cochlear implant comes in two separate parts:

The external speech processor, which looks like a conventional hearing aid, holds a microphone, which collects sound then transmits it through the coil array, which is magnetically attached to the internal receiver through the skin.

The internal receiver is surgically implanted in the mastoid bone behind the ear with an electrode array, which loops around the cochlea, in the inner ear. As the sound is transmitted through the speech processor, to the coil then the receiver as electrical pulses these then pass though the electrodes and stimulate the nerve of hearing to allow the pupil to hear.
Appendix 1 cont.


Appendix 1 cont.

When in a classroom situation the optimum listening distance for the hearing impaired pupil is 1 metre from the teacher. Obviously it is not always possible to keep this distance constant and as a result the sound quality begins to deteriorate with distance.

To combat this problem the pupils can be issued with a phonic ear device, which consists of a radio microphone system, and small receivers, which the pupil wears on the bottom of their hearing aids or cochlear implant, speech processor. The microphone extends the distance to noise ratio up to 3 metres approximately.
We usually use Solaris microphone systems with our younger pupils as they are easy to use and have a large and easy to change range of frequencies allowing use of more than one in a school.

For our Secondary school pupils we use more sophisticated microphone systems that can be linked into TV, Video, CD/DVD players, keyboards in music and language labs (where the equipment allows).

Easylink Smartlink
? What is a Soundfield?

A Soundfield is an amplification system which provides an even spread of sound around the room. A typical ‘soundfield’ consists of a microphone worn by the teacher, a wall mounted amplifier and wall mounted speakers around the classroom.


Teacher raises their voice level attempting to be heard at back of class, risking voice strain.

Clarity deteriorates over distance resulting in students at the back of class not hearing as well as those at the front. Students may loose concentration.

Teacher speaks at normal voice level, avoiding voice strain.

Soundfield amplification means that all students hear at the same level wherever seated in the classroom, maintaining interest and attention of the students and providing a better learning environment.

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Appendix 2.

Specific Examples of Extended Explanation.

Occasionally it will be necessary to fill in some of the small incidental steps of learning that other children may not need but are invaluable to hearing impaired children.

Give lots of examples to show that one word can have a number of meanings/uses.

E.g. ‘Ball’
Show a beach ball, football, tennis ball, golf ball or table tennis ball. This shows that they come in different shapes, textures and sizes but that they have different functions.

Could be a t-shirt, a jumper, on top of something, toy spinning top, etc.

If hearing impaired children miss these definitions they can find life confusing when they get older and come across the word in an unfamiliar context. This can cause confusion and frustration.

E.g. ‘If I have 180 posters that I want to put into 10 bundles, how many bundles will I have?

You would expect the child to know that this is a dividing sum – 180 ÷ 10 = 18.

However as some hearing impaired children are poor at inferences in questions or information often they need to go through the following steps.

* How many posters do you have?
o 180
* How many bundles do you want to make?
o 10
* Is the number of bundles smaller or bigger/larger than the number of posters?
o Bigger/larger
* What kind of sum do we use to make things smaller?
o Take away/subtract or group/divide
* What number do we start with when we divide – smaller or bigger/larger?
o Bigger/larger
* What sum will we write?
o 180 ÷ 10 =
* How do we divide by 10?
o Offer various options – moving the figures one place to the right of the decimal place (formally known as take of the end 0),
o make it into a bus shelter sum or
o How many groups – use concrete materials or drawings of groups with tally marks.
o 10 x ? = 180.
Appendix 2 cont.

Potato bag A costs 45p. Potato bag B costs 63p.
Joe wants to buy 9 bags of potatoes. How much would he save if he buys the cheaper bags?

* The first problem maybe that the child does not know the word ‘cheaper’ and therefore need an alternative.

* Then they are expected to know that they will have to find the total cost of 9 bags of EACH potato before finding the savings.

* They would also have to know the concept of ‘save’ as being a difference in the two prices and therefore ‘difference’ being a subtraction/take away sum.

Guide the child through these steps giving alternative vocabulary and extended explanations where necessary.


As per primary problem solving and implied knowledge/information in questions can prove difficult.
* Discuss the given information – identify key words/figures/functions.
* Use surrounding text to help decipher new/unfamiliar vocabulary.
* Supply with commonly found words and phrases with appropriate standard responses.
* New concepts/learning use initial piece of instruction as a framework for subsequent similar pieces of work. Give step-by-step details – even those that seem evident to you – this is not ‘dumbing down’ merely an necessity for achieving.

Inclusive Practices: Hearing Impairment

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