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Gallaudet Univeristy
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A Good Start: Suggestions for Visual Conversations with Deaf and Hard of Hearing Babies and Toddlers


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Finding out that a child is deaf or hard of hearing early in that child's life gives parents an opportunity to facilitate language learning in natural, everyday situations. Hearing parents naturally, without having to think about it, communicate in many ways that are effective for babies with hearing loss as well as those who are hearing. However, research with deaf parents found they emphasize some communication strategies that prove especially helpful for babies who are deaf or hard of hearing. When hearing parents add these strategies to their communication behaviors, they provide their babies with an especially good start on learning language.