Although I wrote this post about a year ago, I thought I’d update it to share good news:
My original goal with this blog was to inform and educate people about the challenges of the hearing impaired, from my perspective since I have had a hearing loss for about 50 years.
I am also writing a book for adults on hearing loss. My dad, for example, had a pretty serious loss during his latter years, and I’m sure people didn’t quite understand how to be supportive. How do I know? I know because that has been my story. Some folks really do understand and are willing to learn how to meet my needs. Other folks just assume, “Okay, I’ll just speaker louder so you can hear me.” It’s not really a bad thought considering that it does help, sometimes. However, it is, unfortunately, not that simple. What if we are both standing on the side of the street as a fire engine whizzes by with the siren blaring? Good luck with speaking louder, for both of us! In what other situations will it be difficult for the person with the hearing loss? And what about the family member who didn’t know my hearing aid was on the fritz? Hence, I am working on writing this book to help everyone who is dealing with this issue.
In the meantime, I have written two picture books for young children, one dealing with hearing loss and hearing aids, complete with rhyming text:
My first children’s picture book, is entitled The Cat in theTub by Ms Barb, Bub.
(It is the book to the right of the photo.)
I had been teaching at a private preschool for about 5 years, working with 4 year old children. Every March, we taught a Literature unit. I enjoy always that unit, teaching the children about great Caldecott winners, nursery rhymes, and of course, Dr. Seuss books. I have even dressed up in costume and visited them, as “The Cat in the Hat,” as I encouraged literacy skills. What fun!
My director came into my class one Friday morning to show me a photograph on her camera of an adorable gray tabby. “Would you be interested in adopting her?” You guessed it, I brought her home that night. My family and I quickly learned that this kitty (“GG”) was “especially silly,” as she enjoyed playing with all sorts of “interesting things” around the house. Ever since she was very little she’d play with water. First, I had to buy her a weighed dog dish, so she’d stop knocking over the water bowl. And, she’d play with rubber bands (don’t worry they were the thick ones) and drop them into her water bowl, just so she could enjoy fishing them back out of there! Then, she discovered how fun it was to “visit mom” while she (Yes, me) was taking a bath. Oh my goodness! I began taking photographs of her shenanigans in the bathroom, and I made the comment, “This isn’t, “The cat in the hat,’ I have, ‘The cat in the tub.’ And from there the idea just grew. As I played with rhyming text, and made several drafts of the book, my students’ responses encouraged me to get it copyrighted, and self-published. There have been many adorable responses!
My second book began in my head with the title, “These Are My Toys, Boys.” We really didn’t need to buy many store bought toys for “GG,” so I figured it definitely captured her personality. She was content with her drinking straws and pen caps. Then I realized, she could ‘find one of my hearing aids,’ but not for long I assure you! Wouldn’t it be great for parents, and educators, to have a conversation starter to help young children begin to understand that my hearing aids really aren’t ear buds to listen to music? (Talk about “shaking my head!”)
An educator I have always enjoyed sharing good literature with children, and now my dream is to create books that enrich vocabulary as well as entertain children, as their literacy skills develop. Hopefully, I can help motivate children to learn to read, in this season where they are so many electronic devices being used. I pray more and more families realize how important it is to make time in their schedule to read to their young children on a daily basis. Believe me, as a parent I know how busy life gets, but we always took time to read to our son.
A young adult friend of mine wrote this, when she first saw the original post on my Facebook page:
“Yes, children’s books and reading to children matter a lot! I read because my parents spent a lot of time reading to me. They would hold the book and let me see and follow along. When reading Hop on Pop it finally clicked that those symbol things matched the words I was hearing. It was a great moment! fast-forward a few decades and I have 1,000+ books I love so much I carried them across the continent!” Maria H.
Interested in purchasing a copy of my books?
Follow more updates on Barb’s Books at https://www.facebook.com/BarbCollinsBooks