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Silent Worlds – no longer silent

By August 12, 2003websites

When I was a kid I was fascinated by the undersea world. I read Jaques Cousteau’s book The Silent World with rapture and amazement. A few years after my son was born I learned about another silent world as he quickly lost most of his hearing. That was amazing too — but not in a good way.

I was amazed at how much young children learn just because they can hear. Or how much they can’t learn when they can’t hear well. For example, the ‘s’ sound is the quietest sound so the first thing that a person who is losing their hearing doesn’t hear is the sound that is used to form a noun’s plural.

You don’t have to teach normal kids about the idea that an ‘s’ sound at the end of the word means that there are more than one of that object. They just figure it out over time. Not so with kids that can’t hear that sound

Anyway, although my son was termed ‘profoundly deaf’ he actually did pretty well with the hearing that he had, and was able to be mainstreamed in school. The even better news is that a few years ago he got a cochlear implant and now he can talk on the phone and listen to mediocre contemporary music just like his two sisters.

So why am I mentioning all of this personal history? Well, because there is a ‘blogging connection.’ From the Six Apart Blog I found out about two sites devoted to cochlear implants: Bionic Ear Blog by Meryl Evans and Perry Miller’sCochlear Implants: A Mate’s Perspective.

As the Six Apart Blog observes, these sites “are a good reminder that the best technologies are those that help us communicate with the people who matter in our lives. Amen to that.

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