Special toys or flashcards aren’t needed for your child to learn to communicate. Children learn language through talking and playing with their family every day. Here are some ideas for using daily routines to help your child get the most out of their hearing implant.
In the Morning
Start the Day Right
- Start the day by putting the audio processor(s) on as soon as your child wakes up and check they are hearing well. You can do a quick check using the Ling Six Sound Test. This way, you know your child is hearing optimally and ready to start the day. Encourage your child to put their audio processor(s) on themselves in the morning to establish their independence with their device(s) from a young age.
Make Getting Dressed Fun
- Getting dressed can be fun! Let your child pick their clothes and talk about what they would like to wear e.g., “Would you like the green or blue T-shirt today”? or “Today is warm. You need a short sleeve T-shirt instead!”
Teach Language at Breakfast
- Breakfast is another opportunity for language learning. If your child is old enough, involve them in preparing breakfast e.g., “We need four knives and four plates! Then, we need bread and butter”. Talk about breakfast items and what each family member likes or doesn’t like to eat for breakfast: “You like toast, but Dad likes eggs!”
In the Afternoon
Do Housework Together
- Involve your child in routine housework such as preparing lunch or dinner together, drying dishes, emptying the washing machine, hanging clothes, and doing grocery shopping.
Talk About Everything
- Talk about what you are doing, what they can help with, name items, locations and actions and use describing words. Over time, your child will learn to understand the meaning of the words and phrases.
- Give instructions to your child of varying length or complexity to continue to stretch their listening skills and auditory memory.
In the Evening
Expand the Vocabulary Through Reading
- Sharing books before going to bed is a great way to add varied and interesting language and concepts to your child’s vocabulary and widen their experience of the world. It’s likely you didn’t talk about space shuttles or walking through the jungle during your daily routine, but stories allow you to broaden your conversations to many topics, and in doing so expand your child’s vocabulary and imagination. Before starting to read a story, talk about the cover and the pictures on each page. While reading, talk about what you and your child think will happen next, describe feelings, thoughts, and desires of characters or what they remember from the story last time you read it together e.g., “I think the boy is laughing because he heard something funny!”, “Do you remember what happened to the boy? I guess he lost his toy!”
Teach Independence and Responsibility
- Before going to sleep, take the audio processor(s) off and store it in the dry box at night. Encourage your child to help or do this themselves to establish their independence and responsibility with their device(s) from a young age.
More tips and activities based around routines to support your child’s listening and communication skills are included in our All in a Day booklet. Download it for free in English, Turkish, Russian, Arabic, or German.
Looking for more tips and tricks to help your child with a cochlear implant improve their hearing? Click here to read more.
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The content on this website is for general informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. Please contact your doctor or hearing specialist to learn what type of hearing solution is suitable for your specific needs. Not all products, features, or indications shown are approved in all countries.