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Early Years Deaf Service

The Deaf Service supports children aged from birth to 5 years old, living in Barking and Dagenham who have been diagnosed as having a hearing loss.

What the Deaf Service does

A teacher of the deaf will support the child and family from when a child is diagnosed with a hearing loss until the child completes the early years foundation stage.

We will work with you in your home to help your child in all areas of learning and development but especially in acquiring speaking and listening skills. We will also support you on visits to audiology and with getting your child to consistently use their hearing aids or implant.

How the Deaf Service works

The teacher of the deaf will work closely with you at home to find out what your child can already do. We will use the early support monitoring protocol for deaf children when appropriate. Then we will decide together what are the next steps for your child. Each home visit will last about an hour.

You and the teacher of the deaf will discuss a range of activities that will help your child towards their next steps through fun interactive play. We will advise you on how to support your child’s learning by practising the activities each day.

Frequency of visits by the teacher of the deaf

Children who wear hearing aids or have a cochlear implant will be visited on a regular basis according to child and family needs. This will range from weekly visits to monthly visits.

Children who have a unilateral hearing loss will be monitored through local audiology and supported with transitions into nursery or school. Additional support can be provided when needed.

Children in pre-school, nursery or school reception class will be visited in their setting in order to support their learning and development and to plan joint targets with the staff. Usually, once children attend an early years setting they will receive fewer home visits.

Audiology

The teacher of the deaf will also support you and your child with some visits to the local audiology service.

What happens during a home visit

Each home visit will last for approximately one hour. The teacher of the deaf will:

  • bring a range of toys and resources to interest your child and help their development
  • observe and discuss your child’s play and development together with you
  • focus on the things your child can do
  • suggest ways that you can help your child learn, one step at a time
  • celebrate your child’s achievements with you
  • listen to any concerns that you might have about your child’s development
  • refer you to other agencies that will help you and your child

Helping your child to learn

Teacher of the deaf home visits focus on your child’s learning and development.

How you can help:

  • let us know as soon as possible if you need to cancel your visit. We will reschedule the visit if we can
  • let us know if your child, or anyone in the house, is unwell. We do not want to pass on any germs to the other children we visit
  • turn off the TV. We want your child to learn to listen and concentrate on their play, without distractions
  • join in the play and learning with us and your child. We want you to know how to continue to use the activities we will leave with you

Play and communication group for deaf children

Children can select and play with a range of activities that have been set up to support the development of play and communication skills. Parents/ carers have the opportunity to talk and learn from each other. This group is for pre-school deaf children and their parents/carers. Younger siblings are also welcome.

We meet on the first Wednesday of every month from 10 to 11.30 am at The Heathway Centre.

Early Years Deaf Service

Alibon Children's Centre, 175 Sterry Road, Dagenham RM10 8PT

020 8724 3851

portage.office@lbbd.gov.uk