LETTER TO THE TEACHER
I thought I’d publish this version on my site this week as it is well written.
Angela Loucks, M.A., CCC-A – is a licensed Audiologist and has a facebook fan page called ‘Auditory Processing Disorder’.
I wanted to share this with everyone.
Kids Speech Matters
Here are some suggestions I include in a letter to teachers after a diagnosis of APD. Please feel free to share this with friends/family. I have used my own name in the example.
ALSO! Please feel free to comment with advice you would add to the letter- or even things you rephrase. I believe that my job will require great creativity and writing prowess… I do not want to limit my patients success by using only my own abilities!++++
To Whom It May Concern:
CHILD’s NAME has a condition called an “Auditory Processing Disorder” (aka, APD). Because of APD, CHILD’s NAME cannot quickly and accurately digest speech like most of her peers. She will soon be receiving therapy to attempt to correct this issue.
In order to give CHILD’s NAME the best chance to understand what you have to say, it is important to do the following things:
1. Get her attention before speaking to her. Call her name and wait for a response or touch her shoulder if possible/necessary.
2. Use brief instructions with slow and clear speech.
3. Use nonverbal cues to help her understand what you are saying.
4. If you are unsure if she understands what you are saying, give her the opportunity to ask questions or ask her if she needs further clarification.
5. If further clarification is needed, please try to find a different way to phrase what you have to say.
6. Be aware of background noise. She will have a harder time hearing and understanding you if there are other things going on. If the point is important, it may be best to talk to her in a quiet place.
7. Try not to “call her out” in front of classmates. Increasing anxiety to speech will not be beneficial to Angela.
8. Class participation through answering questions can be extremely stressful for children with APD. If class participation needs to be increased, it would be kind to tell her (maybe a day) in advance which question you will have her answer in class so that she will feel confident and competent in front of her peers. “Lobbing” her easy ones for now may pay off greatly in the long and short-term.
9. When Angela does fail to comply with instructions, please assume that it is most likely a failure to understand the instructions as opposed to defiance/lack of compliance.
10. Please show Angela examples of the “finished product” if there is a new task for her to do. She may be able to understand what you would like to have her do if she has a sample to learn from.
11. Preferential seating is highly recommended and use of Assistive Listening Device (ALD) may need to be considered.
CHILD’s NAME APD is not a sign of lack of intelligence, as you may already know. She suffers from a very invisible problem and will benefit greatly from your help and guidance.
Thank you for supporting this very special child.