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Literacy for Children with Combined Vision and Hearing Loss

Strategy 4: Provide opportunities for handling and exploring reading and writing materials

What to do

  • Provide a variety of books, magazines and writing materials for the child to explore
  • Allow the child to explore in whatever way(s) work best (initially may involve tasting, smelling or acting on the materials in a destructive way)
  • Establish a consistent location for materials so child can access independently
  • Allow children to explore writing using adapted and non-conventional materials if/when child is ready
  • Provide opportunities for child to scribble, stamp, finger paint, use stickers and/or adapted writing tools
  • Use techniques that make manipulating a book easier
  • Facilitate book handling by showing a book to the child then demonstrating what to do with it

Things to consider

  • Have you provided materials in a variety of formats?
  • Does the child have a way to actively engage with the materials?
  • Are reading and writing materials found in a variety of places in your home or classroom?
  • Is there a way for children to access materials on their own (if not mobile)?


Always Ask Yourself