Sunday, January 20, 2008

Reading abilities of deaf children

(still haven't figured out how to close caption videos myself) Recently the topic came up about how some studies (believed to be dated)show that deaf people even in high school are not beyond about a fourth grade reading level. Well, some of us don't agree! This book he is not familiar with and has little trouble reading it. It's on a 4-8 year old level, meaning a 4 yr old could understand it and an 8 yr old could read it independently. You'll see he's only six and does very well for his first independent reading of it. There is a difference in learning to read and reading to learn. This transition usually takes place by fourth grade where kids have to learn to comprehend and actually acquire and retain knowledge from what they are reading. Reading expands vocabulary as well. Gage doesn't LOVE to read, he finds it boring so I buy those four wheeler and truck magazines, he loves those. The trick is finding something interesting to them.

24 comments:

slinkerwink said...

That's great about your son, Gage. It's so important to get deaf children involved in reading and learning how to love to read as well. My mother always took me on weekend trips to the library since it was my favorite place to be as a child. Whenever she'd run errands, I would ask her to leave me at the library. I loved books for they were my friends. I hope your son, one day, will look upon books as his friends as well.

Jodi Cutler Del Dottore said...

Val,
Really important post. Before this year, Jordan went to the newsstand every Wednesday to get the latest Mickey Mouse comic book. The pictures together with the words helped him understand better. This year he has found a passion for reading thanks to his Italian teacher and is reading on grade level and ...comprehending. There is no better way to find yourself than through a good book, major gift. It's great that Gage is reading Monster Truck books, after all he is quad-kid:) Jodi

Anonymous said...

Why do you want the son to have cholear implant? Is it because you think the son is inhuman to you? Guess what? You are wrong the son is not inhuman without the implant. The son will have better future without the implant than with the implant. The reason is to hear and to speak is just skills that make children harder to learn than use ASL. All of us, include deaf and blind, are human. This is something you need to understand.

Val said...

wow, where did that come from? You obviously have other issues I'm not capable of helping you with. Good luck with that...at for future reference...I won't be publishing these types of comments...and before anyone else puts it up...don't worry I don't stereotype the Deaf Community based on this comment...thanks to all the others for the kind words.

Deb Ann said...

Sorry that it happened that the person left you the ugly message. I am deaf myself and want to make sure that you are aware that about 75 percent of the Deaf/deaf community doesn’t really mind about CI. I have some friends who have CI and I don't mind as long as they are happy with their CI. I can understand the parents try their best to do what is right for their child or children. Please forgive him or her leaving the message on your blog.
By the way, I did the same thing for my hearing son and now he loves reading the books. If he doesn't like the book, he can go look for another book to be interested in reading. I can see that you are both great parents! You both walk on the journey with your deaf children. They are miracle! Proud of you!
Let you know that I don't want to be implanted because of the risky decision. It could be a bad luck for me if the device is failed on me, I am an adult, and I'm a mother of five kids. My girl said that she loves me as a deaf mother. ;)

Val said...

Thanks Deb Ann and I can't say for sure that I would get implanted if I had grown up w/out hearing either. I might and I might not, once you've grown up w/out sound it would be tough to all of a sudden have it. that's why we did implant our children young (age3) so they could experience sound as they grow. But anyway, that wasn't the only ugly comment left, I started deleting them. Unfortunately, those comments make it to parents before any good comments get to them often times,and this is where there is a misconception that the Deaf Community don't accept ci's. I'm glad Jodi persuaded me to read deafread.com . Now I know that the majority of people there are very nice and I'm loving reading about other families! thank you again

mishkazena said...

I see that you are aware that the majority of Deaf Community is learning to accept that many kids have cochlear implants. I am sorry about that ugly comment.

I am wondering if you could provide a text transcript of what your kid said.

Any deaf kid will read well if the kid has heavy parental involvement encouraging the kids to develop literacy, not just with c.i., but also ASL.

Tales from the CI Gal said...

I can't believe someone would have the nerve to leave a comment like that. It is just ashame that others are so narrow minded.

Reading skills and comprehension are so important. That is what I teach all day long, every day to my special education 5th graders. There is nothing like the love to reading. It takes you anywhere the book goes. Reading is more about the adventure a story takes you on. If you create lifetime readers, you create lifetime learners.

Deb Ann said...

Thank you, Val. I understand. What's more, maybe the skull bone gets healed faster during they're very young than when they are adults? Just a thought and I’m not sure if it is a fact.
By the way, would you like to check out my blog that my young daughter wrote a poem about a rose. She wrote it when she was nine.

Val said...

Mishkazena, thank you for pointing that out, I would also think ASL kids develop good reading skills as well, this is why I feel the study must be dated or something, I'm confused on those results. As for the book it's called Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett. I only filmed the first page but here are the words so you get an idea of what kind of words he was reading.
"We were all sitting around the big kitchen table. It was Saturday morning. Pancake morning. Mom was squeezing oranges for juice. Henry and I were betting on how many pancakes we each could eat. And Grandpa was doing the flipping." the one word he mispronounced was betting...he didn't know what that was, that's a new word for him.

Heather said...

Hi Val,

I'm glad that the cochlear implant has been successful for your child. The research you're speaking of is true and that the majority of deaf teenagers graduating from high school have a low reading and comprehension level. A lot of this is starts at a very early age due to a lack of common language use at home and substandard interpreting services throughout their schooling. If raised oral, so much time is emphasized on speech reading and speaking ability that MANY deaf children fall behind in their subjects and are therefore not up to par with the other students.

With all due respect, your son doesn't seem to fit into the category of this research since evidenced by the video you posted. He obviously hears well enough that he doesn't need to make eye contact to hear your voice and he sounds (from what I can tell by his reading in the video) like a hearing child. So it appears his access to information is quite different from the average "deaf" child.

In regard to that research you spoke of, there are children that beat the odds and I know many very intelligent, well educated and highly accomplished profoundly deaf adults who do not speak nor rely on lip reading but use ASL as their primary language. At first I was amazed to see that many of these people have better written English than so many hearing Americans. I believe this type of success
tends to start with highly involved parents such as yourself and/or an incredibly motivated spirit.

Hopefully in the future, whether a deaf child uses a cochlear implant, is hard of hearing and uses a hearing aid or if a child is profoundly deaf and does not use assisted devices, they have what is most fundamental in their young lives that will put them on the path to success...supportive parents who are involved and willing to accept who they are, just as they are.

Deaf dating said...

Your son looks smart. And I agree with your education way on your kid.

anna s said...

You are a terrific mom, you know that? Reading fluency is a clear measure of success. I am catching up on blogs/vlogs as I was out most of today. Now you are making me feel guilty and I am saying adios and off I go to read with my little ones.

Abbie said...

You are going to love this little piece of information for captioning videos.

www.overstream.net

I'm presently working on something not so top secret through there. :)

leahlefler said...

He's only SIX??? WOW! There are some pretty big (compound) words in that book! I don't think I read that well, lol.

Prince Andrew and the Queen Mum said...

I won't comment on anonymous' comment. but I wanted to say on what heather said although I may have understood it wrong. I would say that gage DOES actually fall into a new group of kids that read GREAt and talk GREAT due to the cochlear implant. Yes in the past kids had to lip read and I think that most hearing parents didn't know ASL well enough to really make reading w/ ASL a part of home life- and lets face it- those that are good readers REALLY learn it at home. (most deaf kids are born to hearing parents...and thus ASL is NOT the first language and they will never know it really well.) School may teach mechanics but you can tell that Val has a book rich home. Andrew is 7 yo- he can pretty much read anything. He got his implant at 13 months. (I know you know all this Val LOL!..just in case anyone else is reading.) We still do a ton of picture books because he doesn't 'like' chapter books (I think it has to do w/ eye tracking)... anyway I am rambling..but the stats are changin'! I wonder what the stats are for kids Gage's and Andrew's age implanted before the age of 2. hmmm....

Prince Andrew and the Queen Mum said...

ps: we LOVE that book!! Gage is SO incredibly clear when reading. That is our struggle. Andrew can read it but intelligibility is not there because he gets so DANG excited when he reads that he goes too fast!!! So- i've decided not to work on intelligibility when we read....i pick other times to do that- don't wanna kill the love of reading. kwim??!! i think i will show him Gage though- maybe a bit of role modeling on how to read aloud. thanks!

Deaf Eagle said...

i post a comment yesterday that you didn't accept. I look messages you accept is say beautiful things about you and son and criticise horrible message. I feel strange my message is truth honest and contain no violence or offensive words. Just i didn't agree children should have cochlear implants and children human rights come first rather than parents. Are you sacred that my views are right that you won't approve my message? I also gave paddy ladd book reference honest view on understand deaf culture. Please not aviod it and yourself should honest to balance views. Please approve it.

Val said...

I do apologize. Two of my comments have not shown up one from the Prince and one from Deaf Eagle. I had nothing against those comments and I've tried to go back and reapprove those and have not yet been successful. I hope to successfully post these as well. Again neither of these offended me and hopefully they will appear! But I'm glad you brought this to my attention.

Val said...

Abbie!! yes, I knew there had to be something. I can't wait to dig in and read more. I had seen where people added text before but couldn't figure out how the heck they did it.
And No Deaf Eagle, your message was not at all the horrible ones I was referring to. I can not get your message to show up, it says that it's already been moderated so I don't know if I rejected it in error or if like the ones from today, didn't get posted up? I was actually referring to other comments left about me being a horrible mother and such. Your message isn't showing up due to error. Glad you wrote back though. People can "not agree" they just can't be hateful and rude, or they don't get posted...your's wasn't hateful so I do apologize for it not showing.

Tales from the CI Gal said...

Val,
you have my support. I bookmarked you so I can check your blog. Just write for you and your children.
CI buddy,
Valerie

Deb Ann said...

Sorry, my mistake. I meant that she wrote it when she's 10.

Thank you, Val, for sending me the email.

Li-Li's Mom said...

Holy cow, Val! I'd be over the moon with joy. My husband and I were both English lit. majors and he teaches the subject, so we have a passion for reading that we hope to instill in the wee one. Medieval poetry or trucks, whatever it takes!

It's so great to see what good parenting can achieve (oh, yeah, and then there's your brilliant child, of course :) ) -- we're going to do our best to take a page out of your book (or out of your blog). Many congratulations (and a big cyber-hug to Gage).

dog food said...

it only takes 20% of us to make 80% of the news.

thank you so much for showing the world that your children can read. I look forward to seeing your videos on closed captions; such acts are certainly ways to show your involvement with all of us, even those who do not go down the CI route.