Fostering Social Connections-Teachers Make A Difference

Teachers should:

  • model effective interactions with deaf and hard of hearing students by engaging them in personal conversations, communicating directly with them, and using respectful and inclusive language about them.
  • create icebreaker opportunities that encourage interaction between deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing students.
  • develop team-based activities and projects for which deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing students collaborate.
  • encourage deaf and hard of hearing students to develop self-advocacy skills and to be responsible for communicating their needs.
Did you know?
  • Middle school and high school may be socially difficult for deaf and hard of hearing students as they may be left out of social groups that are formed during this time.
  • There is a unique value to having interactions with peers who share similar issues and experiences.
  • Sign language classes and clubs are valuable because they help deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing classmates develop a common bond and learn how to communicate directly with each other.
  • Teachers can encourage openness and connection by asking questions that challenge the students to think about diversity and differences and how they contribute to the rich social fabric of the school.
  • Teachers can foster self-confidence and pride by highlighting the accomplishments of deaf and hard of hearing people as a part of classroom projects, discussions, and activities.

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