Regional Acquisition of Language logo.

Contact Information

  • Email: SEreal@aidb.org

    Admin Office Phone: 256-589-1121

    VP: 256-474-0614

Regional Early Acquisition of Language

  • The Regional Early Acquisition of Language (REAL) Project is a collaboration between Gallaudet University’s Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center and Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind (AIDB) and is housed on the campus of AIDB in Talladega, Alabama. The REAL Project serves nine Southeastern states including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.

    Map of southeast including LA, MS, AL, FL, GA, NC, SC, TN, KY

    The mission of the REAL Project is to ensure that infants and toddlers ranging in age from birth to 3 years old and who are deaf or hard of hearing have full access to languages, including American Sign Language and English. The first few years of life are critical for language acquisition because it prepares children to be “school- ready” with a foundation of language when they enter school.

    The REAL Project establishes a network of resources and tools for Early Intervention teams and families.

    The REAL Project provides the following to promote accessible early language acquisition

    • Training
    • Technical assistance
    • Resources 

    Those eligible for assistance include

    • First Responders (e.g., audiologists, pediatricians, etc.)  
    • Early Intervention Service Providers
    • Early Childhood Educators
    • Parents/Caregivers of Deaf/Hard of Hearing Children from Birth to 3

    Implementation

    • Identify First Responders, Early Intervention Providers, Early Educators, and Families
    • Connect those with information regarding early language acquisition for the deaf/hard of hearing 
    • Connect stakeholders with training, resources and materials to support language acquisition