Teacher of the Deaf - Melissa Homann - Gateway Therapies

Melissa Homann

Teacher of the Deaf

Bachelor Education – Special Education – Hearing Impairment

Graduate Certificate in Auslan Studies

 

As a parent, you may hear different words used to describe the diagnosis of a hearing loss: Deaf, hearing impaired and hard of hearing. What does this mean? Firstly, all of these children may face challenges developing communication skills and the language needed for the academic demands of school. Language fluency is a key predictor to reading and writing success, therefore for a child who has a hearing loss early intervention is the best way to enhance these skills. Language is learned through communication opportunities, this can include: verbal and non-verbal communication, speech, text and visual communication such as Auslan. Auslan is the official Australian Sign Language. Through early intervention and developing communication skills with your child, your family will make decisions regarding the most appropriate strategies to make speech and communication accessible for you and your child.

Melissa is a qualified Teacher of the Deaf and has completed a Graduate Certificate in Auslan Studies. With 13 years experience working with children from infancy through to leaving school, she is extremely passionate about enhancing your child’s communication skills and language development. Melissa is highly experienced and is committed to working with you as a family using evidence based strategies to achieve the best outcomes for you and your child. Language and communication skills are imperative for reading and writing achievement.

When working with children and their families, Melissa will create individual early intervention plans, in line with the Best Practices in Family-Centered Early Intervention for Children Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing: An International Consensus Statement, to enhance the communication and language skills for children who are deaf or hard of hearing. This will include evidence based, longitudinal development monitoring tools that will record your child’s communication and language development from infancy through to the early years of his or her education.

Melissa’s focus is to work with families to provide communication opportunities, enhance language skills and develop partnerships with interdisciplinary teams where appropriate:

  • Auditory skills programs to facilitate the child’s ability to use their hearing aids / Cochlear Implants.
  • Establish short-term and long-term goals that meet the needs of the child and their family.
  • Referrals to registered training organisations for the family to learn more about Auslan
  • Provide information and advice for parents to access networks to support social and emotional wellbeing.
  • Advice on assistive technology options that can be used in the childcare center or in the classroom at school.
  • Guidance and support to families, childcare centres or schools to develop early intervention plans that can be implemented to facilitate access to the environment and the curriculum.
  • Explicit Intervention for Phonological and Phonemic awareness (reading and writing skills)

Services provided

  • Individual education plans / individual early intervention plans
  • Mobile service for child in comfortable setting
  • Assist parents / families to develop skills to support child.

Intervention Domains

  • Language and Communication development
  • Social and Emotional support
  • Family and professional partnerships.