“Think about how the word sounds,” they say.
Phonics. They’re a wonderful thing, aren’t they? Unless you’re Deaf. From what I understand, a Deaf person learns words by recognition, sort of like how we see a picture of something and associate it with what it means. Yet it’s not as simple as you’d first think. For instance, we can see a picture of a house with the word “house” below it – easy, right? But what about the word “concept”? How do you explain that word with the definition of it, and expect anyone to remember it? Just the amount of memory it must take for a Deaf person to be able to spell words on sight is phenomenal!
We’re supposed to be able to teach our children the things we understand, especially the things we know most about. Words are my thing. And even though my son, Alex, is learning English, it’s as though it’s a foreign language to me. It’s frustrating that I have no idea how I could possibly go about teaching him how to read. I thank heaven that there’s a school and teachers who can do it.
My A to Z theme concerns the joys and challenges of being the hearing mother of my Deaf son, Alex. To learn more about his beginnings in life, click here to go to my first A to Z entry.