The UK-Ghana deaf education project team identify the value of visual communication
The team, from the University of Leeds and the University of Education Winneba (UEW) in Ghana, have been working with three schools for the deaf and their local health clinics across Ghana.
As part of the research project entitled 'The Early Education for Young Deaf Children and their Caregivers in Ghana', the team set up interviews with caregivers, teachers and clinicians who provide healthcare to the schools. They also filmed the interactions between the children and their caregivers, as they carried out chores around the house and in the community.
The team found that hearing caregivers and deaf children both rely on visual means of communicating, such as gestures and demonstration. The caregivers also combine this with spoken language.
With these strategies in mind, the team are now working with three leading members of the Ghana National Association of the Deaf to deliver a series of workshops with parents and caregivers, to demonstrate the most effective communication approaches and encourage parents to have more confidence.
The project is funded by the British Academy’s Early Childhood Education Programme, supported under the Global Challenges Research Fund. The UK-Ghana deaf education project team have delivered an impact workshop in Winneba where participants deliberated on pertinent issues in consonance with the research topic. Additionally, the Ghana deaf education project team were interviewed on 'Disability Focus'.