As you read in your assigned reading, children who lose either their sight or their hearing usually rely on their other senses to navigate the environment. To simulate this experience try to watch television for fifteen minutes without the sound on. Rely only on your vision to follow the story line. After you complete the loss-of-hearing activity, blind fold yourself so you cannot see at all and turn away from your television. Try listening to a television show for fifteen minutes. Notice that it is more difficult to follow the story without any visual cues.

Once you complete these exercises, respond to the following:

  • Summarize your experience.
  • Identify at least two obstacles that you think children with a hearing or vision disability might experience in daily life.

Discuss strategies (including technology and supports) they have to use in order to learn social and academic skills.

Think about the difficulties of making friends or learning to read without sight or hearing.

  • Describe how deafness might affect a child’s acquisition and use of speech and language, academic achievement, and social functioning.
  • Discuss how blindness and low vision affect learning, motor development, and social interaction.

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