chapter  1
16 Pages

Images of Deaf Children as Learners

The Influence of Adults’ Perceptions on Assessment and Intervention
ByAlec Webster

This chapter examines the impact of adults' preconceptions on processes of assessment and intervention, drawing on examples from research with children who have severe hearing impairment. It demonstrates that images of children are not static, but that some themes have a brief popularity, whilst other ideas are absorbed, reframed and restated in contemporary accounts. People's views on the nature of children's learning and development have changed markedly over periods of historical time. The majority of deaf children are born and raised in hearing families. The researchers involved were also aware of a large gap between the growing knowledge and insights emerging from studies of hearing children and our understanding of the linguistic and psychological development of deaf children. Providing yet another image of children, J. S. Bruner was interested in the problem-solving strategies brought by children and adults to specific situations.