June, 2012  

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ECHO Initiative Exhibits and Presentations 

Birth to Three Institute

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June 11-14, 2012



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Tip of the Month

Helpful Hints for Successful Screening 

One of the most commonly asked questions is, "What can I do when a child is difficult to screen?" 

Here are just a few suggestions offered by a variety of screeners from Early Head Start programs conducting Otoacoustic Emissions hearing screening:
  • I make sure the child has eaten before the screening.  

  • We use quiet toys, like the light globe spinner, that capture the child's attention.  

  • I use the rabbit and mice puppets, telling the child they are shy and we must sit very still before they will come out. I test the puppet's ears before the child's.
  • We have found that screening timid children right amongst their friends is less threatening for them and yields successful results.  

  • We are familiar with the children and their personalities, and find that screening less frightened children first will eliminate the fear of being tested in other children, making them more cooperative.
Finger puppets

Screening with Friends
  • If there is an older sibling, I test their ears first. 

  • I prefer to screen toddlers and infants while they are sleeping.

  • One of the strategies that works best for me is to have the teacher sit beside the toddlers or to have them hold the infants in their arms.

  • I use the parent as a model, telling the child that what
    we are going to do is fun and exciting--listen to the "music" or the "birds." I
    have the parents make a big
    "ah" about it!  

  • Some children benefit from advance preparation and
    I've had home visitors show them on their dolls before
    I arrive.
We've incorporated these and other suggestions into a new Helpful Hints resource on KidsHearing.org.  Our goal is to help you to have the same positive experience described by this screener: "My success rate has significantly increased from when I first started screening.  I think just being confident helps tremendously. Overall, I'm at ease with children and can think on my feet and adjust my 'style' to each individual." 
Probe of the Month

How have your screening experiences changed and improved over time?  Let us know at:  




And, as always, please share www.KidsHearing.org with anyone you think would benefit from our resources.     


ECHO - Headstart 

Probes and Tips is a newsletter from the ECHO Initiative that provides monthly TIPS

to enhance early childhood hearing screening and follow-up practices and PROBES

 about current activities so we can learn from one another's successes and challenges.