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When we talk about the school inclusion of children with a cochlear implant, we must bear in mind that this implant is only a technical aid that allows certain sound frequencies to reach the auditory nerve, since depending on the degree of disability the child will receive certain sounds but will still have a sensory deficit.
So when planning a school inclusion for this type of disability, as with the rest of functional diversities, we must take into account personalized planning adapted to each child with this type of disability. For this we must do an analysis of both the antecedents and the intervention that we must cover for the correct inclusion of the child and their educational and socio-emotional well-being.
The antecedents to take into account can be:
- The medical and evolutionary history of each child with this disability and their neurological and intellectual status.
- Know the etiology of hearing loss, that is, its onset as well as the age of identification.
- At what time the implant has occurred at the evolutionary level as well as the adaptation of the implant that the child has had.
- We must also take into account the cultural background before and after the implant.
In the same way, for a correct pedagogical intervention we must take into account:
- The quality, quantity and consistency of the intervention before the cochlear implant, that is, the background on the child's learning.
- Inform us about the language used before the implant, whether it is spoken or signed.
- As well as influencing the appropriate linguistic stimulation for each case, taking into account the educational background applied to the child.
Starting from this, we must respect, design or redesign the most appropriate style or methodology to each child with a cochlear implant, adapting hearing materials to a visual or tactile perception according to the degree of hearing deficit and their evolution with the prosthetic implant.
We also have to intervene towards a favoring of the socio-emotional environment of the child with hearing impairment and cochlear implant. For this reason, once again, we have to encourage the participation of students in activities that facilitate empathy and knowledge of hearing impairment, as well as make them aware of the language used by the child to facilitate interaction among equals. Recreating through games the auditory sensation of hearing only certain sounds that are often distorted.
But you may be thinking: 'for this, teachers need training around hearing impairment and, specifically, the cochlear implant'. Indeed, for a correct intervention of school inclusion in children with a cochlear implant or with any other sensory, physical or mental disability, teaching professionals must acquire specific and basic knowledge of the disabilities they have in their students in order to intervene and analyze the aforementioned, as well as favoring interaction with classmates through shared curricular activities among the class group.
Finally, in the facilitation of knowledge about diversity, in this case sensory, the student plays a fundamental role in the family, since it is the most knowledgeable source of information about the educational and socio-emotional benefits for the child. Therefore, both teachers and families have to work as a team to improve the quality of life of the child as well as their school and social inclusion.
In this regard, the intervention and planning of educational inclusion will also depend on and vary according to the auditory etiology and the time of the cochlear implant. Therefore, once again, educational personalization is once again essential for the promotion of school inclusion and the integration of the child in the class group, where the psycho-pedagogical team and the family are the key pillars for their evolution and adaptation.
Clinical and social psychologist
You can read more articles similar to Adaptation to school of children with cochlear implants, in the On-Site Ear Care category.