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American Annals of the Deaf

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Literacy and Your Deaf Child: What Every Parent Should Know

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13. Encourage the child to keep a diary. This is a simple-sounding activity but is rather difficult even for adults to do. Keep your expectations reasonable. An occasional entry is far better than arguing for daily entries.

14. Write the occasional directives and encourage the child to do the same thing. You might write, “Please turn the oven on to 375 degrees and walk the dog,” whereas your child might write, “Take me to a movie. Make me pizza for dinner, please.”

15. Have a family message board where the family can leave messages and notes for each other, such as where they are going, what they are doing, and what time they will be home.

16. Write a letter to someone together.

17. Have the child watch you write out checks or use the Internet to pay bills. At some point, see if he can guide you through the entire process—either by writing out the check and mailing it or by going through each step of the on-line banking process.

18. Create do-it-yourself books, such as My Wish Book, My Secret Book, and My Book about Me.

19. Patchwork letters. Cut out letters from a magazine or newspaper and paste them together to make words. Later, create sentences from the words. See who can create the funniest sentence from a group of words.

20. For older children whose reading skills are advanced enough to read the newspaper, try proofreading the local newspaper for typographical errors.

21. Use a local map to work out the best route to a certain destination. Have your child write the directions down for getting from your home to another place and back again.

22. Make a list of videos and rank them using a five-star ranking system or simple statements, such as “I loved this one and want to watch it again.”

23. If going on a vacation or a trip, have your child make a list of things they want to take and things they want to do while on the trip This is an activity that everyone usually enjoys doing no matter how old they are.

24. Write a paragraph to include in the family Christmas letter.

25. Write out the clues for a game of “Treasure Hunt” around the house.

Now, you get started on your way to making writing a habit around the house by adding five more great strategies for encouraging your deaf child to write.

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