Family Support

Information for Parents, Grandparents and Carers.

When a child is diagnosed as severely or profoundly deaf, the parents’ first question is often “Will she be able to talk?”

It is a very natural question; all parents normally expect to share their language with all their children. We believe that not only is it their right but that, for the vast majority of deaf children, it is a perfectly valid option.

If this option interests you we hope you will find the information in this section helpful. You might want to look at our list of Frequently Asked Questions and Resources Section where there is even more information.

Information handouts:

  1. Why DELTA?
  2. Deaf babies CAN develop language naturally 
  3. Deaf children CAN listen and talk

Information leaflets:

  1. The Natural Aural Approach
  2. Just like every other child
  3. Reading and the deaf child
  4. Making the Natural Aural Approach work


1. My child is deaf – what can I do   –   Explores a number of questions that arise
2. I like my hearing aids   –   Discusses the importance of hearing aids
3. Learning to talk   –   Explains how to help your deaf child talk
4. Understanding hearing loss   –   Introduces some of the basic concepts
5. Hearing Aids – An Introduction

Monitoring and Supporting the Development of Listening and Talking.

Families have the natural skills and interactions in their home and community to support the all round development of their hearing impaired baby/child.

The Monitoring Protocol documents help to guide and support the families natural abilities.  They are documents that were designed to be owned by families and shared with professionals.

Parents and families CAN DO It for themselves.

After the identification of hearing loss it is vital that the baby and child’s developmental progress is tracked and supported.  The strategies of support that enable hearing children to develop a rich foundation of language and understanding are just what the hearing impaired child needs at the same stage of development.

The professional can offer support to the family when they have a full understanding of the sequential nature of language and listening development.

For a later identified hearing impaired child the stages are still sequential, the strategies are similar, however the interactions  must relate to the age, interest and experiences of the child.


For the hearing impaired child their listening will rely on the continuity of well set up and managed ‘hearing aids’( including all audiological support devices) that are used within their waking hours.

Parents, families and Teachers of the deaf often refer to the language and listening development of the child ‘as old as consistent and appropriate  ‘hearing aid’ wearing’.  Given that also the child is engaged in interactions that are meaningful  and appropriate to their needs in the home and educational setting.

The Monitoring Protocol documents  help support the tracking of the baby/child’s all round development and offer support to develop the next steps.  These guidance documents will help develop an understanding of the needs of the individual hearing impaired child and used together with families and shared with professionals in Health and Education encourage ‘a CAN DO’ and family centered approach. 

The Monitoring Protocol for deaf babies and children

Why and How it was devised pdf

The Monitoring Protocol Developmental Cards. 

There are 3 cards for each stage.    And they give key pointers of how you can recognise the child is at this stage  and what you can do to support the next steps  at this stage.  Communication ; Attending , Listening and Vocalisations; Play

 Summative Record. pdf

There is a fold out sheet for each stage  and on one sheet you can see across all areas of  development  at each stage.  It is a good overview  and helps families realise that their child can be at an earlier stage for example in listening  and talking but may be age appropriate in other milestones. 

Some families find this is enough for tracking purposes and is a simpler way to keep track.  It doesn’t however have the detail of support ideas the full Monitoring Protocol has.

Level 2 Materials pdf

The Level 2 Monitoring Protocol materials go more thoroughly into understanding language development and practical support and help greatly in monitoring the effective set up of the ‘hearing aids’ and the ‘consistency of hearing aid wearing.’  They help the family and professional recognise the sequential nature of language and listening and that steps can’t be missed.  

The detail helps to identify areas that can be developed  or experiences that might have been missed and how they can be incorporated ‘naturally’ in daily activities.

Areas include:

  • Early words and meaning
  • Early grammar development
  • Parent child Interaction (pragmatics)
  • Attending listening and Vocalisation. – There are sequential developmental steps  in the baby/child’s  listening and vocalisations and these are linked to  the point that the child started to hear and listen.