Some Books for Children with Hearing Loss

There are a number of books available now for children with hearing loss. This is a good thing because it is important for children with hearing loss, or any other disability, not to feel that they are alone.

The books are divided into two groups – one for and about children who use spoken language and a second for children who use sign language. These are good for children with hearing loss, for their siblings, and for typical hearing children who want to understand something about disabilities. This is not a complete list, but just what I have my hands on now. I am happy to hear about other books.

 

Books for children who use spoken language

Some books have been written by parents who felt there were no books that spoke to their children. Others were written by hearing aid or cochlear implant manufacturers and others by teens or adults with hearing loss.

A few months back, Wendy Kupfer wrote for this blog about her book Let’s Hear It For Almigal. It tells the story of a little girl with hearing loss who gets cochlear implants. The book covers her adventures and talks positively about her life.

A Birthday for Ben by Kate Gaynor and Karen Quirke is about a 7-year-old who wears hearing aids. Ben speaks and also uses sign language. He has a birthday party where they play games that children who speak and children who sign can all play together. No one feels left out and it is Ben’s best birthday party ever.

Hear Bear Discovers a World of Sound by David and Brooke Sawyer is distributed by Siemens Hearing Instruments. It is about a little bear who had trouble hearing. He went to the ear doctor and the audiologist. He gets hearing aids and then can hear everything.

Mellie Goes to Preschool is distributed by Medel, a cochlear implant manufacturer.  Mellie is an elephant who gets a cochlear implant and goes to school, where she learns new words and hears a lot of things.

Cosmo Gets an Ear by Gary Clemente is about a little boy with hearing loss. The book describes the process of getting hearing aids and all the new sounds Cosmo can hear with them.

Abby Gets a Cochlear Implant by Maureen Riski is the story of a little girl who has purple hearing aids and then gets a cochlear implant.

In Ellie’s Ears by Elizabeth Boschini and Rachel Chaikof, a little girl explains her hearing loss to her class. Happy Birthday to My Ears, which is written by the same authors, is a book for very young children and tells about a little boy’s first year with his cochlear implant.

Elana’s Ears by Gloria Lowell is intended for siblings of children with hearing loss. It tells about a sister who is determined to be the best friend and helper for her sister with hearing loss.

In El Deafo, Cece Bell writes about a little girl who loses hearing at age 4 from meningitis. At first she retreats into herself, but then she gets an FM system and is able to hear the teacher. She has trouble hearing in some situations, but the FM gives her super powers because, unlike her classmates, she can hear what the teacher is saying from a distance if the teacher forgets to turn off the microphone. The book touches on different attitudes – disability vs difference. While I really do not like the title of the book, the topic is a good one.

 

Books for Children Who Sign

Nobody’s Perfect by the actress Marlee Matlin is about a little girl who attends a mainstream school with an interpreter. She has a birthday party, but the new girl in the class does not attend, so she uses sign language to make friends.

Dad and Me in the Morning by Patricia Lakin is the story of a little boy and his father and it shows how there are many ways to communicate.

Moses Goes to a Concert by Isaac Millman recounts how a little boy and his classmates go to a concert and enjoy the feel of music. The percussionist in the orchestra is deaf and performs in stocking feet so he can feel the vibrations.

In Prudence Park and a Sign Friendship by Christine Burk, a hearing girl meets a deaf girl on the beach and uses her knowledge of sign language to develop a friendship.

Can You Hear a Rainbow? The Story of a Deaf Boy Named Chris by Jamie Riggio Heelan features a 10-year-old boy who uses a variety of communication modalities and hearing aids to communicate.

About Jane Madell

Jane Madell has a consulting practice in pediatric audiology. She is an audiologist, speech-language pathologist, and LSLS auditory verbal therapist, with a BA from Emerson College and an MA and PhD from the University of Wisconsin. Her 45+ years experience ranges from Deaf Nursery programs to positions at the League for the Hard of Hearing (Director), Long Island College Hospital, Downstate Medical Center, Beth Israel Medical Center/New York Eye and Ear Infirmary as director of the Hearing and Learning Center and Cochlear Implant Center. Jane has taught at the University of Tennessee, Columbia University, Downstate Medical School, and Albert Einstein Medical School, published 5 books, and written numerous books chapters and journal articles, and is a well known international lecturer.

4 Comments

  1. These books can also be included in Pre-School and Kindergarten class rooms where children with hearing loss are integrated into the general population. I went to grade school through high school with a friend who had partial hearing loss. He was on the soccer team and participated in all activities. But he also was the target of jokes and ridicule. There must have been difficult days for him. Perhaps if we had been read these types of books in Kindergarten & First grade we all would have been better classmates.

  2. Thanks for the list. I’ll toot my own horn and would like to add My Magic Ears by Bob Kennedy to the list. Life sounds good!

  3. The Cat Who Wore a Pot on Her Head by by Ann Seidler, Jan Slepian
    Illustrator Richard E. Martin, Scholastic 1987
    This is a very entertaining book is about a cat who puts a pot on her head and then misunderstands what people are saying. I have used this book to demonstrate to a grade one class what it is like not to hear well. One of the children in the class had a hearing loss.

    Unfortunately, this marvelous book is out of print; however used copies are available on Amazon.

  4. It is a hard time for me: my 6 year old little son has been diagnosed with sensorineural hearing loss. Now he is under treatment in a hearing aid clinic in Toronto ( Hearing solutions ). I don’t know whether he will get back his hearing ability or not, but I don’t want him to be troubled by this. He loves to read comics and other story books. Last day I bought him “Moses goes to a concert” and he really loved that book.

Comments are closed.