CENTRAL AUDITORY PROCESSING PROBLEMS
SUGGESTIONS FOR HOME AND SCHOOL
- When giving verbal instructions or directions, make certain you have the child's
- Eliminate noise sources and visual distractions whenever possible.
Provide preferential classroom seating, away from heavy traffic areas.
Consider sound-attenuating ear muffs or ear plugs to help the child deal with noisy areas
such as the cafeteria. Ear- plugs may also be beneficial when doing
homework or working individually at a desk.
Be sensitive to the noise level in a car with windows open and a radio playing. Do not
give important verbal information in this situation.
Homework should be done in a quiet room. Turn off the T.V. and stereo.
- When talking to the child, use familiar language. Do not use long words when short words
will do. Also, use short sentences with only one idea at a time.
- Structure activities to avoid confusion. The formation of daily routines and schedules
will help the child to achieve some measure of success--something every child needs
to maintain self-esteem.
- Periodic feedback from the child will give the parent/teacher and the child the
opportunity to monitor what has been heard. it is better to train the child to routinely
rephrase than to regularly ask if he/she understands. For the child with an auditory
memory problem, there is often no realization that he/she is missing information.
- Encourage older children to use a tape recorder. Instructions or directions can then be
played back for review and reinforcement.
- The older child should learn to carry a note pad for homework assignments and other
reminders. Learning to make lists and checking items which have been completed is a good
beginning to self-organization.
- Teaching, or the delivery of instructions or directions, should use more than one
sensory modality, whenever possible. Verbal information can be reinforced with the
addition of written instructions, modeling the activity, gestures, etc.
- Teaching should proceed from what is known and familiar to what is novel and new. This
will help to build confidence and insure success.
- Break new information into small steps. Be generous with praiseand specific about
what behaviors are being praised-- for each accomplishment.
- Interweave difficult activities with those with which the child has had success. Find
some things the child does well, and give him/her some regular time to do them. Do not
ever withhold these activities as a punishment. Success in non-academic activities
is still success.
- Be creative in developing new materials and activities to develop and train specific
skills. For example, auditory memory training can be accomplished using focusing,
listening with visual cues and retelling using those visual cues, games which involve
repetition. Each of these will seem like a new activity to the child. It is very important
to maintain interest and motivation. The keys to learning are fun and a sense of
CHILDREN WITH AUDITORY PROCESSING DEFICITS NEED TO EXPERIENCE SUCCESS AND BUILD
SELF-ESTEEM, EVEN MORE THAN THEY NEED TO INCREASE MEMORY AND LEARNING SKILLS. NOTHING IS
STRATEGIES TO FACILITATE ORGANIZATION
Organizing and keeping up with a schedule is difficult for children and adults. We seem
to think we can accomplish all we need to do in just a few minutes after spending time on
the phone, in front of the T.V., etc.... Children and adolescents tend to underestimate
the time it will take to get chores and homework completed. By helping children and
adolescents learn to become organized, we are teaching them functional skills they will
use throughout their lives.
A few simple possessions can help the child become better organized.
- Instruct each child to keep a calendar/assignment book. Daily events and assignments
should be recorded immediately. Instruct the child to check off completed items.
- Instruct each child to carry a billfold, The billfold should contain his address and
telephone number as well as numbers of significant others who can be contacted in case of
emergency. Several quarters to be used to make emergency phone calls should be kept in the
billfold at all times.
- Place magnets for notes on the refrigerator, the bathroom mirror, etc. These can be used
to hold brief messages and reminders of times and dates of activities, Telephone messages
can be placed on the refrigerator and then no one forgets to tell Mom or Dad who called.
- Place the child's own key on a string and place a special hook in his room on which he
can hang it.
- Compartmentalized or divided drawers are good for faster retrieving of articles needed
for school in the morning.
- Instruct the child to organize schoolwork and completed work sheets by filing them in
subject folders, Homework to be completed each day can be filed in a "Homework"
folder. If there is no homework, this should also be recorded and the child needs to be
made responsible for checking daily.
- Teach the child to prioritize activities, homework assignments, steps involved in big
- Encourage the child to become independent. This includes teaching and allowing him to
travel and shop for clothing alone as well as to be aware of his own goals.
- When the child brings home a notice from or to school, have him read it and summarize
the contents to the parent or teacher. This way, he will be reminded of the contents.
Allow the child to fill out the identification information on forms.
- If the child needs a new part for his bicycle, a new book bag, etc., help him to learn
how to look up where he can purchase it in the Yellow Pages.
- Allow the child to plan meals or plan what to order in restaurants. Try collecting menus
from local take-out restaurants.
- Keep local street maps handy and help the child use them to find the fastest route to
where they want to go, Ask the child to write out the directions that tell someone how to
get to his house.
- Provide opportunities for the child to read and follow instruction manuals, These can be
found on the back of cookie mixes, board games, following a sewing pattern, assembling a
model, washing instructions, etc. All can turn into a disaster if instructions are not
followed correctly. Have the child read the instructions for each step as they go along
with clarification from you of any words or processes they do not understand. Children's
cookbooks are excellent sources of simple instructions.
- Increase the child's attention to and understanding of signs in the environment. A fun
game is to encourage the child to collect amusing, confusing, or misspelled signs. Look
for amusing names on restaurants and shops. Allow the child to make signs to put on his
- Encourage list making so that nothing is forgotten, while providing experience in
organizing and recording information, Try giving the child the grocery list and letting
him purchase the item. Be specific about sizes and brand names. Instruct him to pay
attention to the amount of money he has to spend.
- If a child earns money or receives an allowance, encourage him to open a savings
account, The child will eventually learn the value of and the ability to handle his own
- Encourage the child to record birthdays of friends and family members. At the beginning
of each month, remind him to see if he needs to purchase gifts/cards and help him do so.
- Listen for important words that tell you what to do. Examples include: read, study,
draw, listen, decide, center, write, remember, do, circle, upper, tell, left, underline,
- Listen for numbers. Numbers tell you what pages to read, how many problems to solve, how
many pages to make a report.
- Listen for words that the teacher emphasizes or says louder. These are often important
direction following words.
- Here's a trick to help the student remember more than one direction at a time. Write
numbers and special marks, like L, on worksheets to match what the teacher says. These
will help the student remember what to do when the teacher is finished giving directions.
- Have the child picture the directions he hears in his mind.
- Have the student write notes about the directions he hears.
- Have the child illustrate the directions he hears.
- Ask the child to repeat the directions to himself a few times. Repetition gives the
child more chances to remember what is heard.
- Instruct the child to ALWAYS write the directions down.