Hesperian Health Guides

Chapter 12: Education

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HealthWiki > Helping Children Who Are Deaf > Chapter 12: Education

All children — deaf and hearing — have a right to education. Children who get an education have more opportunities to learn about the world, develop skills, and find jobs. Education is especially important for deaf children because it allows them to develop their thinking, to communicate with other deaf and hearing people, and to make friends. And with the skills they gain, children who cannot hear well will be able to live productive, independent lives and take part in the life of the community.

Though this book is mostly for children from birth to age 5, this chapter includes some important issues about educating older deaf children, to help parents plan for their child's education.

Learning begins at home
Smiling woman with her baby on her back.

Learning begins at home, in a child's infancy, and continues throughout her life. The family plays a very important role in helping children learn. Parents and family members are the earliest and most important teachers. At home, a child will learn to communicate, start thinking, and begin relating to other people.

Some communities have teachers and deaf adults who come to peoples' homes to help parents learn how to communicate with their deaf child. They show family members activities they can do together to learn language. (See Chapter 7, Chapter 8, and Chapter 9 for ideas and activities to help families teach their children a language.)