8. What other strategies have been developed to overcome the cultural barriers and unique challenges of this population?
-Creating an Effective Learning Environment (Gerner de Garcia, 1993)
- Students should be provided with a cooperative, hands-on learning environment—Not competitive
- Students should work in small groups and be given charge for part of the day
- Teachers must individualize lessons and prepare separate tests for different children
- Multicultural literature/materials should be used in the classroom—Traditional stories, poems, and songs
-Helps in Spanish language acquisition and cultural awareness
-Builds a child’s sense of self-esteem
- Songs should be written on charts and accompanied by illustrations to aid comprehension
- Children should be exposed to stories in a variety of forms:
-Teachers can read to them (One adult reads and another interprets)
-Deaf adults can tell them stories
-Stories can be acted out
-Quality videotapes can be used
- Fairy tales and books read in English should be reinforced with the Spanish version—Share these books with parents to establish reading at home
- Teachers should use a pat on the back or hand contact more often with these children—Makes them feel more at home
- A few reassuring words in the home language or a culturally relevant time frame or gesture should also be used
- Role models from various ethnic groups should be involved in the educational program (MacNeil, 1990)
- Encourage students to be involved in leadership opportunities and other meaningful school activities (MacNeil, 1990)
-Empowering Parents and Families
- Establish special parent groups
-Helps parents make effective transition to school culture
-Helps foster involvement (Cohen, 1993)
- Teach parents sign language, fingerspelling, or total communication—Reduces communication barriers (Delgado, 1984)
- Point out to parents that certain syntactic structures in ASL and Spanish are similar
-Both languages have the same noun-adjective construction and inverted question form (Dean, 1984)
- Focus on the strengths of the family: religious belief system, community support system, cultural value system, and family structure (Blackwell & Fischgrund, 1984)
- Important for the educator to present him or herself less as a professional—Must show that he or she is interested in the parent as a human being (Fischgrund, Cohen, & Clarkson, 1987)
-Making Early Intervention Successful
- Best accomplished by professional staff who are linguistically and culturally appropriate (Blackwell & Fischgrund, 1984)
- Interpreters are not recommended for parent counseling, parent training, or home visits—Hispanic families prefer to relate on a personal basis (Blackwell & Fischgrund, 1984)
- Asking parents to speak to their child in English is not advised—Detrimental to parent-child interaction
-Important for parents not to feel even more distant from their deaf child
because of their lack of proficiency in English (Blackwell & Fischgrund,
- Give "new" parents a cassette tape of information and suggestions in their comfortable language
-Most helpful for parents who are illiterate (Grant, 1993)
- Necessary to have support from many sources: community, professionals, media (Grant, 1993)
Andrews, J.F., & Jordan, D.L. (1997). Increasing English literacy skills of Hispanic deaf students using Hispanic culture and multimedia. Retrieved February 21, 1998 from the World Wide Web:
-Explains an on-going project aimed to increase the English literacy skills of deaf Hispanic students through the use of multimedia. Also provides information on topics relevant to the education of this population.
Blackwell, P.M., & Fischgrund, J.E. (1984). Issues in the development of culturally responsive programs for deaf students from non-English-speaking homes. In Delgado, G.L. (Ed.), The Hispanic deaf. Washington DC: Gallaudet College Press.
Cohen, O. (1993). Educational needs of African American and Hispanic deaf children and youth. In Christensen, K.M., & Delgado, G.L. (Eds.), Multicultural issues in deafness. New York: Longman Publishing.
Dean, C.C. (1984). The hearing-impaired Hispanic child: Sociolinguistic considerations. In Delgado, G.L. (Ed.), The Hispanic deaf. Washington DC: Gallaudet College Press.
Delgado, G.L. (1984). Hearing-impaired children from non-native-language homes. In Delgado, G.L. (Ed.), The Hispanic deaf. Washington DC: Gallaudet College Press.
Gerner de Garcia, B. (1993). Addressing the needs of Hispanic deaf children. In Christensen, K.M., & Delgado, G.L. (Eds.), Multicultural issues in deafness. New York: Longman Publishing.
Grant, J. (1993). Hearing-impaired children from Mexican-American homes. Volta Review, 95 (5), 131-135.
Fischgrund, J., Cohen, O., & Clarkson, R. (1987). Hearing impaired children in black and Hispanic families. Volta Review, 89 (5), 59-67.
MacNeil, B. (1990). Educational needs for multicultural hearing-impaired students in the public school system. American Annals of the Deaf, 135 (2), 75-82.