Skip to content
Literacy for Children with Combined Vision and Hearing Loss

Literacy for Children with Combined Vision and Hearing Loss

[Note: The information on this website was originally published in 2013 on another site. Due to technical problems with the original site, it was moved here to the NCDB website in March 2023. The information included has not been updated since 2013, except to remove links to resources that are no longer available.]

All children can read... let us show you how!

Are you the parent or teacher of a child with deaf-blindness or multiple disabilities? Are you looking for a community of families and teachers such as yours? Are you a professor or student at a university interested in connecting with others to share resources and strategies around literacy for learners with complex challenges? Are you an administrator looking for ways to improve literacy in your school systems? Then you are in the right place.

This site is for individuals interested in beginning or enhancing literacy instruction for children with combined vision and hearing loss. Its content is also designed to improve literacy instruction for children with multiple disabilities and other complex learning challenges. Our contributors include State Deaf Blind Project staff as well as teachers who want to give back to the field and help more families play a role in educating children with complex learning challenges. The instructional techniques and tips provided on this site are evidence based practices for increasing literacy skills.

It is recommended that you visit the Shifting the Perspective page for an explanation of literacy from a broader view. If you are looking for resources for a particular child, completing the Literacy Skills Checklist provides guidance in determining which area of the website will be most helpful.

Please take a minute to fill out the survey. Your feedback will allow us to improve our site and keep it current. You can also suggest examples, videos, and additional resources you would like to see included on the site.


If you are looking for information for an individual child, start with the Literacy Skills Checklist. [Spanish]

Check out the companion module for this website: Literacy for Children Who are Deaf-Blind: Building a Foundation

Post the Steps to Literacy in your classroom as a quick reference to literacy instruction. 

To achieve literacy, there must be reading. To achieve reading, it must be meaningful. To achieve meaningfulness, there must be communication. To achieve communication, there must be experience. To achieve experience, there must be opportunity. To achieve opportunity, there must be care and understanding." (Laurie Hinzman)

Woman and boy sitting in a grassy field, practicing signs while working through a book.
Two boys, sitting at a picnic table, working through a literacy book.
Young child looking at a book.