Title: 'What Do These Numbers Mean? Providing Parents with Data to Make Informed Decisions. '
Track: 3 - Language Acquisition and Development
Keyword(s): language aquisition, parent education, bilingual best practices
Learning Objectives:
  1. understand the different variables that contribute to children's language acquisition.
  2. identify best practices in exposing children to language.


Upon identification of a child’s hearing level, parents are often inundated with a slew of information which is sometimes conflicting, and often confusing! In order to provide parents with a clear understanding of the impact of their decisions, professionals working with them can provide data to help ensure the best possible outcomes for their deaf or hard-of-hearing child. The presenter will share longitudinal data that has been collected at a bilingual educational program. Data will include relationships between home language, fluency and academic levels. After a review of the data, there will be a discussion focusing on the importance of providing early language exposure and communication between the parent and child. In addition, there will be a discussion focusing on best practices to promote early language acquisition and development for parents and the professionals who work with them.
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Michele Berke - Primary Presenter
California School for the Deaf
     Credentials: Ph.D., Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder; Multiple Subjects and Deaf/Hard of Hearing Teaching Credential; California
      Michele Berke has worked for over 30 years in programs within the Deaf community. Her experience includes management of a rest home for deaf and deaf-blind senior citizens, directing Gallaudet University's western regional office, coordinating a US Department of Education funded project to develop an ASL Assessment tool, and teaching college-level Linguistics of ASL courses. Berke currently works at the California School for the Deaf in Fremont as the Student Outcomes Specialist where she is responsible for assessment and data analysis. Her doctoral studies in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences from the University of Colorado in Boulder focused on exploring the shared reading practices of Deaf and hearing mothers and their pre-school children.

Financial - No relevant financial relationship exist.

Nonfinancial - No relevant nonfinancial relationship exist.