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Deaf in One Ear, School Children

Updated on September 3, 2013

Deaf in One Ear Concerns

Many parents find out sometimes right away or sometimes after the child is three or four years old that there is a problem. The child is diagnosed with being deaf in one ear. This is a concern but it is very manageable. Children are very observant by nature so this is helpful, they are naturally inquisitive so if they are in an environment that encourages questions, they will flourish. Many concerns parents face, is will my child be able to keep up? Will he/she be able to participate like the other children? Will he/she need special education? Is there something I should do? etc...

These are all understandable questions, especially in todays public school system, where overcrowding is problem. Too many students and not enough teachers. Which means an inability for the teachers to give very much one on one time to the students.

The good news is that with knowledge of the situation, teachers and parents can come up with a plan to best help the child gain the advantange to succeed.


Tackleing Speech Problems

Deafness in One ear is usually something many children can compensate for through time and sometimes parents aren't even aware there is a problem for some time, because the child has learned how to cypher what is being said, even when it is hard to understand. But there are some children who may have issues with speech, because of the deafness. They may have trouble sounding out words properly. They may revert back to baby talk, toddler talk because it is easier and they feel that it is sufficient as long as the can get what they want. But as long as they have good hearing in one ear they should be able to correct these speech problem.

Which is one good thing about public school system, they all have Speech therapy in place to deal with such issues.

So If your child has any kind of speech problems that don't seem to be getting better, ask about speech therapy in their school. These therapy sessions happen during the school hours and many times they try to incorporate their regular lessons into the therapy session.

Educating the Teacher

 Many times it is only necessary to inform the teachers of the impairment to get good results.  Parents and teacher can figure out the best plan to help you child excel in school.  The best tactics are, having the child sit in the first role of the classroom.  Avoiding seats where noisy objects might be, such window air conditioners. 

Teachers can make sure the class is quiet before she begins the lessons.  Having the child participate as much as possible, to keep him/her engaged in the classwork.  Because participation equals heightened awareness, and mental sharpness. When this happens all our senses are sharper. 

Teachers can give several alternatives to classwork, or homework. Such as when she assigns homework, she not only needs to say the subject, page number, and what is expected  in the homework, but she needs to write it down on the blackboard.  Or handout worksheets, anything that gives the child several pieces of input for the same information. 

Parents need to be active in the child's school work, help with homework. Ask the child about their day. Ask the child what homework they have and how did the teacher give them this homework.  Make the child aware of the different ways they can find out what their homework is.  Since these children are hearing impaired, speaking , or saying things over and over again are good ways to help them remember things.  For example, When learning math skills it is not only good to write the problem down, but verbalize the problem say the actual words with them, help them count it out, add, subtract etc.  This is very useful early on and it becomes easier later on for the child to be able to say it to themselves in there head, to help work out problems.

Reading aloud is an excellent way to have children engage in the classroom and at home. The more they read the better they get.  And  better reading leads to being able to retain and understand what was read.

Music helps children learn

Deaf in One Ear, Musically inclined

 It is very possible that these children if given the chance, could be musically inclined.  Music is sometimes tricky for children who are deaf in one ear.  Remember music plus lyrics is sometimes hard to follow.  Yet for this type of child it is a welcome challenge to figure out what is being said.

Music lessons may be very helpful for many reasons. One, it makes the child use their sense of hearing in a new way. Two, music is mathematical, another subliminal lesson in math.

All children like music, so having music lessons in whatever instrument of choice, or possibly voice lessons, will go far to boost moral. Even just a simple music class in school can be very useful for the child engaging in school activities.


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Hello all,

      I, as well, was born deaf in my right ear. It was obvious as soon as I was born, since my right ear was born deformed and closed (it just didn't form properly). It has honestly been a long journey coping with the situation, and I am still battling this issue today.

      I can relate with things such as sitting in the front row when in grade school, and participating in speech therapy. I did not know then why I could not pronounce certain sounds properly, but it all makes sense now.

      When I was little, I had that mindset that, "everyone is beautiful in their own unique ways." I always thought I was beautiful, until one day I decided to share with some friends. i was maybe ten at the time, and I remember when showing the girls my deformed ear, they were shocked and showed signs of disgust. I was so hurt by the event, and since then, I always felt a sense of insecurity and lack of confidence. I think my situation has also raised me in being more introverted than I probably would have been, had I been born "normal."

      It has honestly been a long, and hard journey. I remember nights of just going to sleep in tears wondering, "why me." Many times I had felt so different and alone, and I even thought about committing suicide countless times.

      Like a said, it was hard back in grade school. However, I look back and am so proud of my accomplishments, even with my hearing impairment.

      With being half deaf, children are more likely to have difficulty playing music properly. However, in middle school, I was able to be in first chair cello position.

      Children can also have a difficult time hearing and understanding material in class. I am proud to say that I am currently considering to pursue medical school. I have maintained A's and B's in all courses. I will be done with college soon, and I am excited for what awaits afterwards.

      My only encouragement to children with hearing impairment is to not let it bring you down. Yes, the situation is unfortunate, but do not let your impairment cause you to treat yourself less than what you are capable of. Sometimes my siblings even forget that I am half deaf. It's interesting.

      Though I feel more confident today than ever, I hope to one day have the confidence to wear my hair up, and to not care what others think about my deformed ear. Girls want to be beautiful, and sometimes I honestly don't feel beautiful. This is a somewhat sad note to end on, but my journey is not finished yet, and I have high hopes for the future. Best wishes to everyone out there that is struggling with any sort of hearing impairment. My heart goes out to you all.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      i found out my now 10 year old daughteris deaf in her right ear and 40% hearing loss in her left ear i found out when she was 6 but the worst thing ive found with all this is the bulling that comes with not being perfect my poor daughter has come home in tears soo many times saying she wishes she was never born deaf and no one likes her and on and on just wish there was some kind of help in the schooling system but well now the teachers are striking here in b.c so thats out the window

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I just find out my nine year girl is partialling deaf. I was told that she was born with completely deaf in her left ear and has 60% of her right ear. My daughter learned to survive with 60% of her aear up to 6 years. She began to have problem in third grade. My daughter was an honor student in 1st and 2nd grade. When she gets to third grade she could not handle the class and was not able to do as well as she did in 1st and 2nd grade. My daughter told me she could not hear on her left ear this year while we were watching TV. She asked me to switch place with her, for she cannot hear on the left side,which I did not believe she was telling me the truth. How could I be her mother not knowing that she was deaf. I toke my daughter the following week to her doctor and explained to the doctor what my daughter told me. The doctor did an earing test but was not sure of the result, so threfore sent my daughter to a specialist. They ran some tests whiche she fell. Tbe doctor then send her for CT test which revealed that my daughter was born with the above problems. Yes, she can not pronounce certain words. She will be receiving help for speach. She will also reveiving some class help in her class room. I am meeting with the teachers on Monday. I am not knowledgeable yet in this subject I am not sure what to ask on her behalf. Please help me if you have any experience in this regard. My daughter is about to flank 4th grade, if she does not get help. She was test in several subject which she is now showing a second grade level. I read lots of good comment on this site, which will help me in reasing my daughter.

    • Diane Inside profile imageAUTHOR

      Diane Inside 

      7 years ago

      Hello Nig b, glad to hear you son is doing well. I seems that most children compensate very well with their hearing deficit.

    • profile image

      nige b 

      7 years ago

      Hi there my sons 6 & completely deaf in one ear from birth,he copes very well & speech is normal,would love for him to have an opp one day on his( broken ear) as he calls it,schooling fine reading normal doing very well,would love to speak to others in same boat

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Hello, I'm a 19 years old and completely deaf in my left ear. If there's one thing I would suggest for parents of a child with unilateral hearing it would be to just raise them like a normal kid. After being raised along side my brother who has completely normal hearing I learned to adapt to my situation. I never needed special accomadations for my hearing loss and by the time I was in high school I felt offended when my counseler suggested that I should get help for my "disability". Now I'm a freshman in college and doing fine and I'm sure that your child will do the same. I'm glad that my parents let me fend for myself with my hearing loss because now I never feel limited or hampered with my condition.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      My baby boy was born with what they say "severe" hearing loss in his left ear. He is 2 now and developing well. Only thing is he can't pronounce words right. His favourite word is George and I just hope his life isn't too difficult. He has a twin sister who is a fluent talking so I hope he never feels bad at school having to sit at front of class etc. The hospital hasn't given us too many answers at all. One thing that corcerns me is that Alex always holds his finger in his good ear. He just holds it there. I don't know why. Any suggestions

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      well i have a 3 month old son who has severe hearing loss in his right ear. It must have happened during development. Anyways he does have good hearing in his left ear. Im just very curious how other people adapt to having this loss and i wanted to find out how much of a challenge this will be to help and teach my son in his future. With the information provided here i feel its not going to be very hard. We just have to wait and see because he does not talk yet. also did anyone ever lose hearing in their good ear by chance because the doctor also told me its possible he can loose that too but if it happened at birth there is nothing to worrie about. Thank you again !!!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I was also born completely deaf in my right ear. I am still in school, and I have to sit in the front of the class, on the right side of the room. I carry around a small tape recorder, so if I don't hear something in class, I can listen to the tape. It is really hard to go to school and not being to hear my friends. Sometimes, if I ask someone to repeat themselves, and I still don't hear them they get upset and just say never mind. I really feel left out sometimes because I can't always hear. I actually am a very good musician. I'm not really sure why. You would think I wouldn't be able to play music easily. I just think about it. . .I am really lucky I can hear at all. Some people can't hear out of either of their ears. I think it's really hard for me, but other people are out there with even harder problems. Under the circumstances, I think I am doing pretty well. Thanks for reading.

    • Diane Inside profile imageAUTHOR

      Diane Inside 

      8 years ago

      Hi Ld73, sorry to hear that you had to have this surgery and that it resulted in some hearing loss. You sound like you are adapting very well though. I'm glad you may be able to use a few ideas to help you handle it in school. And thanks so much for leaving a comment.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      hello,i had an opperation on my left ear; leaving me partiallydeaf in it. it has been hardto adapt but this hub gave me a few ideas of how to handle it! I'm 14 and itoo get the occasional back handed comment, but as you sentioned, you learn to live with it :) thanks

    • Diane Inside profile imageAUTHOR

      Diane Inside 

      9 years ago

      Thanks Rafini for the comment.

    • Rafini profile image


      9 years ago from Somewhere I can't get away from

      Good hub. Informative.


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