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Keys to Better Listening, by Kelly Knepper, M.S. CF-SLP

Keys to Better Listening, by Kelly Knepper, M.S. CF-SLP

child listening to motherThe Key to Better Listening

Good listening is important in all environments, including home, school, and at extracurricular activities. Below are some suggestions parents, teachers, and other adults can make that are easy to implement and that will help support your child’s listening.

Reduce background noise when possible.

Why? This will help your child better focus on what is going on in the room. This is especially important for kids with hearing, attention, or processing disorders.
How? Keep windows and doors closed. Place rugs or carpet in the room if there none. Turn off noisy equipment, such as TVs, radios, and fans. Talk to your child about noise and demonstrate how it can be difficult to hear when others are talking at the same time.

Simplify directions and reduce your language.

Why? Kids with language, attention, or processing disorders can only pay attention to so much verbal information at one time. While they might be listening, they may not remember verbal information if too much is given at once.
How? Give one direction at a time. Use simple wording and short sentences. Check for comprehension by asking your child what he/she is supposed to do after they have been given a direction.

Try not to yell or raise your voice to gain attention.

Why? Yelling strains the voice and increases your risk of losing your voice completely or getting Laryngitis.
How? Clap your hands. Turn the lights on/off. Tap your child on the shoulder before speaking to them. Use a bell, whistle, or musical chime to gain attention.

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Melissa Masterino-Clack