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Winning is Taking Part- Amelia Kroehnert

Inclusivity in action: Dance teacher supports Amelia to shine on stage

As a coach or instructor, you might have concerns about involving a deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) child in your activity. In fact, our survey showed that not knowing how to communicate was the number one concern for clubs wanting to be more inclusive.

In this video, you’ll discover how a dance teacher learned to communicate effectively with a young DHH dancer. It features 12-year-old Amelia, who was born with sensorineural hearing loss – a type of hearing loss caused by damage to the inner ear or the pathways between the ear and the brain. 

She started dancing in mainstream classes at age three and dancing competitively at six. Amelia, who has some hearing, explains how she uses hearing aids and an FM system to help her dance in time to the music.

You can still achieve anything you want to…

Her dance teacher talks about how Amelia’s mum Angie explained the appropriate way to talk to Amelia and how to adjust the music volume for her. He says he has developed teaching practices and ways of communicating that have helped Amelia build skills such as musicality. He also talks about how Amelia has been truly accepted and is just “one of the group”.

You’ll also hear Angie telling a little of their journey with a DHH child. She makes the point that a hearing impairment doesn’t make someone “any less”.  Angie suggests young DHH people “just go out there and live your fullest life.”

Amelia also shares something of her experience growing up with a hearing impairment. She describes how it has affected her in the dance studio but hasn’t hindered the pursuit of her dreams. As Amelia sums up: “It doesn’t matter what disability you have. It doesn’t matter what you’re going through. You can still achieve anything you want to.”