Author Heather Wittaker, from A Different Little Doggy, was kind enough to write this blog about Allison. "We all know teachers make a difference to children, so for July, we thought we'd highlight one special teacher making a difference in multiple ways. Meet Allison Schley.
Allison teaches language concepts to deaf and hard of hearing children, but it goes beyond the kids. She also teaches parents and regular ed staff about hearing loss and how to interact with those who experience hearing loss. Her teaching makes a positive impact on both children and their families.
Allison is also the author of Forever Friends, a charming children's book about a boy and a dog who are both deaf, but become life long friends. Life in silence can be hard on both dogs and people. Forever Friends helps teach children to be accepting of those who are different due to hearing loss. Her books help kids relate to characters who are different, so they can see we are all special. When asked how she makes a difference for children, Allison stated, "I teach them to embrace their hearing loss, not hide it. I show them to be proud of who they are."
Personally, I think the biggest way Allison makes a difference is by promoting acceptance. It's when we don't understand something that we fear it and may experience anxiety. Understanding, on the other hand, brings about acceptance. When we understand something, there's no reason to fear it.
Thank you Allison (and your own different little doggy) for all you do for children."
Eve Dicker Eiseman, retired Therapist for Deaf and HH individuals: "Allison works well with children and families. She communicates well and her enthusiasm in her projects is a positive for the families she works with. She understands child development and is a good resource for the children and families. ”
Singer/Songwriter, Becca Richter says,"I really like the story. As a person with partial hearing loss, I could identify with the boy sleeping soundly through the noise. The story came to life with the great illustrations and it was nice to see the positive connection between the hearing impaired boy and dog. Thumbs up!"
Kari Jensen, owner of Miss Kari's Bakery, " The most heartwarming story I've ever read! If you haven't got this book yet I highly recommend that you do – and read it to your family; they'll love it :-)"
Allison had the pleasure of teaching a teen with hearing loss in my 12 week ASL class. Her mom came to a book signing and bought a copy of Forever Friends. Her mom, Linda, states, " I just LOVE your book! I almost cried! On so many levels I could relate to your book. First of all, we have a dog named Daisy who joined our family 1 year ago today. She is a rescue dog who is about 10 years old. She was in the shelter for a year! We can’t imagine why she wasn’t adopted over all that time. We love her so much! Anyways, your book brings an awareness for acceptance – and we really aren’t all that different after all. Thanks for making a difference in so many lives! I am happy to be one of your fans!"