Giving your deaf or hard of hearing child a first language gives them foundation to learn a second language

The most important part of raising a Deaf kiddo is teaching him how to advocate for himself. We found a new way for our little man to do that.
This year has been a challenge for Calvin & we finally discovered that he struggles the most at recess, and he has an interpreter, but we are not sure how involved they are.
1- We live in a VERY hearing centered world. So much around us is completely driven by sound. Calvin must learn how to function as a Deaf person inside a world that is not made for him, and often not interested in being fair to him.
2- I will not always be there to interpret or run interference for him. As much as I want him to stay little forever, he has other plans.
So, I thought about how I need to teach him to be resilient and advocate for himself. I also realized we need to be building other skills as well, like his reading and writing. I will NEVER force Calvin to learn to speak. Or lip read. I don’t judge those who ask this of their kids, but it is not for him. I will expect him to read and write well, and solve problems, and communicate with everyone.
Then, I was at the grocery store the other day. The little notebook made me stop dead in my tracks. I’ve seen other Deaf adults carry one. When I saw it though, I thought, “recess.” I snatched it up, and when I got home I talked to Calvin about making sure an interpreter can help, but if she/ he can’t, it’s ok to write a note to ask your friend something.
Today when I picked him up, the little notes I read just made me grin. The sloppy handwriting. The bad spelling. The sweet responses from friends.
Then as we were leaving, the school secretary got to ask him about the snow in Idaho, and he got to tell her about losing a tooth.
As I pulled out of the school parking lot, he tried to get my attention and then passed me this note.
#whyisign #askmewhyisign #bilingualkids #deafkidsrock

Category:
Lit / Community ASL
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Tags:
language, video (online), bi-lingual, Parent Journeys, Accessibility, Early Language Exposure, Know the Facts, Inclusion
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