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Level Up Your Auditory Skills with LightHouse Language of Listening Course

There’s a misconception that people who are blind or have low vision have better hearing than their sighted peers. That’s not true, but what is true is that blind people can be better attuned to their hearing with the right training. LightHouse is providing that training with the return of our online course The Language of Listening.
The course runs for six sessions in June, and we want to ensure everyone interested knows as soon as possible, so they can make time in their schedule for the course!

Course Description

The whistle of a teapot, or bubbles in a pot hint at tasty things to come. The whizz of cars in front of us are warnings, while those traveling beside us are protective. The dial tone that lets us know we are one step closer to speaking to a loved one. In this series of classes, we will discuss the many ways we can sharpen our listening skills to make the most of what we hear. Whether your goal is to get out and travel, prepare a special meal, return to school or work, or write the great American novel, we will help you separate the useful signals from all the noise, and to level up your listening skills.

Student Criteria

Students interested in this course can be of any skill level and fall anywhere on the spectrum of blindness. They should be comfortable learning in a group setting, willing to actively participate in classes, able to commit to attend all six (6) sessions in their entirety, be able to access the Zoom platform, and be able to hear and understand spoken English and sounds of various pitches/tones.
Course Materials: A pair of over the ear headphones with a microphone.
Learning Outcomes:

  • Students will be more prepared to transition from utilizing visual input to using auditory input text to speech
  • Students will understand the clues about documents provided by text to speech
  • Students will learn to analyze their environment, identify sounds, and determine how to best use the auditory information they are receiving in order to problem solve and complete various tasks of daily living

Students will be provided with a foundation of interpreting audio cues when traveling indoors and outdoors.

Course Schedule

  • Session 1: Tuesday, June 11 – Welcome & Course Overview This session will include staff/student introductions, a course overview, and introduction to auditory skills, the completion of a pre-test, and time for questions.
  • Session 2: Thursday, June 13 – A Deep Dive into “Thinking in Sound”
    The goal of this session is to introduce common examples of how to utilize auditory cues. Students will begin by identifying the type of learner they are and how to supplement that with auditory input. Tips for reading comprehension and interpersonal communication will also be covered.
  • Session 3: Tuesday, June 18 – Around the House
    This session will focus on the application of auditory skills within the area of independent living. Cooking, note-taking, object location-identification, and labeling are some of the skill areas that will be covered.
  • Session 4: Thursday, June 20 – Voices, Tones, and Beeps! Oh My
    This session will introduce students to the audio information provided by various forms of mainstream and access technology. Students will be exposed to various types of voices and indication sounds. They will learn how to determine what the certain indicators mean, and which voice characteristics are most appropriate for various tasks.
  • Session 5: Tuesday, June 25 – Out & About
    An Orientation & Mobility Specialist will join this session to discuss the intersection of orientation and mobility skills with auditory skills. Students will be provided with relevant examples and guided through the process of siphoning out the most useful auditory information amongst the plethora of noise in outside and unfamiliar environments.
  • Session 6: Thursday, June 27 – Putting It All Together
    This session will include time for final questions, a discussion about the process of transitioning to the usage of more auditory input, and a discussion of how to determine when it may be appropriate to use vision as well (this is known as the “Use Your Vision When it is F.U.N.,” technique). Students will also complete the post-test during this session.

Course Info

What: The Language of Listening
When: Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 11, 13, 18, 20, 25 & 27, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm
Where: Online
RSVP: To Bobbi Pompey at BPompey@lighthouse-sf.org or 415-694-7613 by June 4.

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