Thursday, August 11, 2011

School Time for Me and Everyone Else

I have so many new things awaiting me this year.  Now I know what my students feel like when they begin a new year with new teachers and the possibility of making new friends.  The program I work with is now on a new campus with new teachers and I, am not only on this campus with new teachers, but have a whole new staff to work within my program.  I wonder if I am asking the same questions as the children.  Will they like me?  Will they work with me?  Will they listen to me?  Will I hear what they say?  Remember, I work with children with a hearing impairment and as they become aware that they are a little different - these questions are very real for them as they are for other children, but magnified because of what they feel is different.  And then I think of their parents - What questions do they have going through their mind?  Will they make friends?  Will they have a good day?  Will they be able to listen and hear the teacher?  Will my child know what is going on around them?  Sound familiar?

I guess it does all feel the same in different ways.  I have to remember when I counsel my parents I tell them their children are waiting to come alive with communication.  We just have to give them the tools to make it happen.  Listening comes first, localizing that sound and finding it.  (Listening to others comes first, localizing the people that want to learn with me and making friends)  Then we move into modeling the sounds and language for them, and the child quickly takes the cue to copy those sounds and words.  (We show the friends are new program, or we show people we can listen and model what they want from us.)  Then we move to turn-taking and sharing of information. (You've seen me write about this before - it never changes with the situation - new school, new program, new friends that share information and ideas and fun.)  What is the difference with how I feel and how parents feel and then how the children feel?  Sometimes I feel the world is cold. . . my parents sometimes feel the world is cold. . . children feel the world is cold and we teach them to make it their business to build fires - taken from Horace Troubel

I do hope everyone has a great beginning of another school year!

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