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Literacy for Children with Combined Vision and Hearing Loss

Strategy 2: Embed the use of objects, symbols or words throughout the child's day

What to do

  • Label objects in the child's environment using pictures, words, braille and/or tactile symbols (e.g. bed, sink, coat hook, desk) 
  • Identify objects and symbols within routines and activities familiar to the child
  • Use familiar objects or symbols to create an anticipation calendar or daily calendar
  • Draw attention to words and text in the environment during child's daily routines and activities
  • Identify the child's preferences and connect them to objects, symbols and words
  • Teach child that objects and people exist, have names and have purpose/meaning
  • Point out logos, signs, packages in the home, school and in the community
  • Look at books, grocery ads, magazines and mail with the child

Things to consider

  • Are you looking at things from the child's perspective and selecting objects and symbols that match the child's experience of what you are trying to represent?
  • Are you using cues in a consistent manner to help the child anticipate what is going to happen next?
  • Have you provided materials in a variety of formats?
  • Does the child have a way to actively engage with the materials?
  • Have you noticed whether the child appears to have put some meaning to these activities?
  • Have you seen the child respond in a consistent manner to objects, symbols and/or words? What is that response?
  • Have you thought about how you present a new person, activity or experience as opposed to a familiar one?


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