“See and Hear”: Screening Kids Senses As School Readiness
As you get your kids ready to start school, you’ve got a long list of things to do. One of those things is to make sure your child’s basic senses – seeing and hearing in particular – have been tested recently.
A first place to start is to be up to date with sensory screenings at the pediatrician’s office. Vision and hearing tests are easy and fast – and can catch problems early so that they don’t become big problems in the classroom. Keep in mind that 5-10% of school-age kids can develop some type of hearing loss and 10% can develop vision issues.
As the year progresses, also be sure to look for signals – from both kids and teachers – that there may be an emerging sensory issue. For example, vision problems can be quite subtle and don’t come to the surface until later in the school year. If there is a change in how your child is doing in school, consider issues with seeing and hearing.
Other problems should be on your radar as well. In particular, remember that a number of language problems can involve difficulties in processing words and letters. The signals you might get – from both kids and teachers – can be confusing. You might find that your child can hear fine, but can’t understand at the level that is expected of them. They might seem like they don’t like to read. Again, screening and testing can identify if there is an underlying language processing deficit – at both the visual and auditory level.
Bottom line, keep you eyes and ears open for potential problems with your kids’ eyes and ears.
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