How to enable children with hearing loss to listen and speak without obstacles?—SET News Channel
According to statistics from the Health Promotion Administration of Ministry of Health and Welfare, the rate of hearing loss among newborns in Taiwan is 0.3%, but it increases to 1.3% in pre-school hearing screening. Do you know why this gap exists?
Some children's hearing loss is late-onset, and if not detected early, it may cause problems in academic performance, social interaction, and low self-esteem. In order to enable these children to join the hearing world equally with others, the Children's Hearing Foundation, which focuses on hearing and speech training for children with hearing loss, promotes early hearing screening and intervention. Even children with severe hearing loss have the opportunity to speak. Program hosts Candy Yang and Sam Wang of "Stories in Taiwan" witnessed such an example.
▲Abby puts on inline wheels and showed off bravery and speed, scaring Uncle Sam at 1.8 meters tall.
Seven-year-old Abby is one of the successful early intervention cases of the foundation. As a child with severe hearing loss, she could only hear loud sounds like airplanes landing. After receiving auditory-verbal sessions through the foundation which emphasizes learning language in natural situations, she learned to speak after receiving a cochlear implant to improve her hearing. Life is full of language and knowledge, and teaching situations and opportunities for language learning can be created from children's familiar daily life activities, such as playing house games, making juice in the kitchen, and organizing closets. This can stimulate children's interest in actively learning language and can also guide parents to use various natural situations in life to communicate with their children and enhance their listening and speaking abilities. Abby can now talk to Candy Yang and Sam Wang without using sign language, showing her talents as a ballet dancer and even playing the piano with Candy and racing Sam on rollerblades, surpassing the two hosts in skill.
▲Abby win the hearts of Candy Yang and Sam Wang Shaowei with her music.
Children with hearing loss, like Abby, are identified through newborn hearing screening tests, with approximately 3 out of every 1,000 newborns being diagnosed annually. However, some children may have progressive or delayed hearing loss that cannot be detected through newborn hearing screening tests, making hearing screening tests before school age particularly important. Currently, the implementation of pre-school hearing screening tests varies among different counties and cities in Taiwan, and the sensitivity of frontline early intervention personnel in detecting hearing loss in young children needs to be improved, as many children with pre-school hearing loss are not being identified. To address this issue, the Children's Hearing Foundation, with the help of the social welfare's Michelin Guide for Goodness, Aurora Trust Award, will focus on facilitating relevant policies and training that are beneficial to children with hearing loss and bridging the gap between the public and private sectors, enabling children with hearing loss to seamlessly integrate into society and contribute to society through their diverse talents.
▲CHF’s auditory-verbal intervention sessions integrates learning into daily life, allowing children with hearing loss to naturally learn to listen and speak through play.