There are a number of checklists available to families that look at the developmental milestones and language development.
In NZ families with deaf children are given the Monitoring Protocols and these are checked by the parents and AODC. They are a large cumbersome document and many parents I’ve spoken to find it over whelming and don’t bother with it. It’s a shame because there is some great info in the document and it can be a great guide for families and professionals to know what to look for next. It’s just such a mission to work through the numerous sheets of paper!
Given the right conditions, deaf and hard of hearing babies should be hitting their milestones at the expected ages and stages.
Another tool that we have as parents in NZ is the Well Child book, or as I still call it the ‘Plunket Book’.
Unfortunately the Well Child book is created for the majority and is not written for Deaf children. So each time we have a visit, as I sit and reflect I on the previous month and the skills Carter has mastered, I go through the vision checklist and tick each box, then I put a big strike through the ‘hearing’ questions. On occasion, I have altered the text to make it relevant to a signing child, or I have given an example of the Deaf behaviour that it equivalent to the milestone mentioned.
At the recent ANZCED 2016 conference I was fortunate enough to be presenting in a block alongside Dr Elizabeth Levesque, from Melbourne. Elizabeth works with families and has developed the developmental scale for English and Auslan.
This is much easier to use than the Monitoring Protocols and is a great guide for families and professionals.
Please excuse the extremely loud tv in the background (oops) but you can see through these clips that Carter is hitting each stage and in fact is currently displaying some of the stages beyond his age!