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Availability for Learning

Young boy sitting in a wheelchair, holding a tambourine on his lap and touching it with both hands. Big smile on his face.

Availability to learn means being emotionally and physically ready to engage with people, absorb information, and pay attention to what is occurring around you. Children and youth who are available to learn are:

  • Alert
  • Attentive
  • Interested
  • Not over-stimulated

Availability to learn may be positively or negatively influenced by both internal factors (physical and emotional feelings) and external factors (things happening outside of the body). The task of educators and family members is to figure out how to change or modify these factors to help a child become available to learn.

Kimberly Lauger talks about the power of observation for figuring out what may be influencing a child at a given point in time.


Scoggin, K., Christianson, K., Cooper, H., Lauger, K., Knapp, M., Peterson, D., Mogan, M. (2014, September, rev.). Availability for learning. In National Center on Deaf-Blindness, Open Hands, Open Access: Deaf-Blind Intervener Learning Modules. National Center on Deaf-Blindness.


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