Auditory-Verbal Therapy provides families with the road map they need, in order to share their world of sound and conversation with their child with hearing loss. Families choose Auditory-Verbal Therapy so that they raise their children with hearing loss to develop spoken language skills via listening alone.
Warren Estabrooks, Shefali Shah’s mentor and professional guide provides insight into the Auditory-Verbal Practice Today.Warren Estabrooks on AVT
Families across the world talk, sing, play with and read to their children from infancy. Auditory-Verbal Therapy replicates these universal patterns of inter-action between caregiver and child to guide families to steer their child with hearing loss to listen, learn and talk, the same as children with typical hearing, of the same age. Mirroring these to create a systematic sequence of Auditory-Verbal Therapy activities that blend into the daily routines of families, is at the heart of Sound Steps AVT’s early intervention service.
Babies spend time at home, in the company of those who love them. They venture out into their communities with their families, secure in the knowledge that they are loved, watched over and supported. Auditory- Verbal Therapy recognises that families need time to practise and apply the skills (Auditory-Verbal techniques and strategies) and insights learnt in therapy, in real time at home and in their communities, so that their child enjoys the benefits of auditory learning. Furthermore, young children learn best when allowed to participate in a variety of experiences.
Young children learn best when allowed to participate in a variety of experiences. Sound Steps AVT recognises that families must be allowed the time they need, to identify and then create opportunities that support listening, learning and talking for their child, within a timely and lively schedule. Timeliness is critical in auditory habilitation given that facilitating age-appropriate development is key. With this in mind, Auditory- Verbal Therapy sessions at Sound Steps AVT are scheduled every week for an hour, with 2 face-to-face sessions and 2 distance sessions via Skype every month. (OR Each month typically has face-to-face therapy sessions and distance therapy sessions.) This allows families the time they need to practise and children the time they need to learn in supportive environments. On-going and formal, standardised assessments help track the progress of children through Sound Steps AVT’s early intervention service and to measure them against typical development in their hearing peers. Once development stabilises and is age-appropriate or ahead of age, (as assessed), families and children graduate from Sound Steps AVT, ready to enjoy the life that their families have planned and dreamed for them.