The school environment can be a challenge for people who hear with a cochlear implant. Recipients Zach Allen and Isla Lawrence share their experiences and tips to help you get the most out of it.
Zachary Allen is like any other 11-year-old boy with a cochlear implant, doing his best to get the most out of school. The game changer has been his improved hearing in the classroom since using the Cochlear™ Wireless Mini Microphone 2+, along with steps taken to educate the teachers and school about the technology to make sure they understood how to get the most out of it in the classroom.
Zach’s mum, Kirsty, says a Cochlear Implant expert came to the school to educate and train the teachers after testing made it clear that Zach’s speech understanding in the classroom greatly improved when he used the Mini Microphone 2+.
“It quickly became clear that Zach was hearing more clearly when the teacher wears the Mini Microphone 2+. He is doing better because he finds it easier to focus and concentrate on the teacher.”
For nine year-old Isla Lawrence, it’s a similar story. “It’s best when the teacher speaks very clearly,” she says. “But if they’re wearing a Mini Microphone or using the radio, I ask them to turn it down or off when they need to shout, so it doesn’t hurt my ears!”
When it comes to making friends and building relationships, Isla’s advice is to welcome questions about your implants.
“When your friends ask how your cochlear implants work, you can explain the CIs and then also talk about what people can do to help you hear,” says Isla. “And, if you can’t hear your friend or a teacher, nobody minds if you just ask them to repeat it more clearly for you.”
If you are attending a school that hasn’t had much experience of supporting people with hearing loss, you and your family may need to educate them before they can educate you! If you’d like some tips or resources, get in touch with Cochlear Family at email@example.com. We’ve got a LOT of experience and it’s one of our favourite ways to help younger recipients.