In a mainstream setting, your child is working harder to hear than any other kid in his class. Better said, your child’s brain is working harder to hear than any other kid in the class. In AVT we provide listening strategies and processing strategies and technologies that help immensely in the classroom. But, we are all human, aren’t we?
From the time your kiddo is dropped off at the school until the time they get home, they are typically on “hearing vigilance.” This means that they know they might miss something so they are trying to focus all their brain energy to hear. And your kid is awesome. They are listening and learning along with kids who have typical hearing.
What a workout for the brain! Your little student is doing amazing work all day long and they get tired. This is called Auditory Fatigue, and it's a real thing.
Not all kids, but many kids experience a period of auditory fatigue, especially when they first start school.
What are the signs?
Shut downs at school
Melt downs at school or melt downs at home
Seeming inability to process information when they get home
Uncharacteristic behavioral outbursts at home
Getting mad for no reason
Refusing to follow through with household expectations after school
When they get home, kids with hearing loss benefit from some quiet time.
Parents want to know all the details: Who did you eat lunch with? What did you work on? Did you hear the teacher’s voice clearly today? Did so-and-so talk to his mom about a playdate? Do you have any homework? The list goes on.
Take a quiet break. This does not mean you encourage them to take off their devices. But it does mean some quiet time in the house. No TV. No 24 questions. No pressure. Give this 30 minutes to how ever long they need.
At school, you can talk to the teacher about ways to give the student a listening break. Maybe deliver some school mail down the hall to the office. Maybe hang out for 15 minutes with another teacher on admin time. Maybe run a scheduled errand to another teacher who is expecting your student to show at a certain time. The possibilities depend on how your school structures the day.
Remember, we all need a break sometimes.