Sonoma County Office of Education

SCOE DHH Specialist Publishes First Book

08/15/2022 -

Shayla Boo and You book cover

Young deaf or hard-of-hearing students now have a new resource for learning written by Vielka Montout, SCOE special education teacher. Her new interactive book Shayla Boo and You includes easy to understand explanations for young students with hearing loss, covering topics ranging from audiograms and ossicles to the eight parts of a hearing aid. Shayla Boo and You is illustrated by Sahir Hussin and available on Amazon.

“I wanted to write a book that would provide information and resources to the reader,” said Montout. “I also wanted it to support teachers and Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing students with the fundamentals of hearing, mechanics of hearing aids, and how sound works.”

The inspiration for her career and her first book came when Montout, as an undergrad student, met a woman with two profoundly deaf daughters. “Their mother was not able to make it to assist in the classroom one day and allowed me to go in her place. It was absolutely awesome! We had circle time, sang songs, played outside, completed small group lessons and by the time I left for the day, I knew what I wanted to do with my life. I completed my undergraduate studies and was accepted into the Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing Program at San Francisco State University. Were it not for Ashley and Shayla Boo, I would not be where I am today. Thank you girls!”

Many of Montout’s colleagues have already used the book to support lessons about how to read an audiogram, identify parts of the hearing aid, identify parts of the ear, as well as advocacy. “I have received lots of positive feedback from my fellow teachers,” said Montout.

SCOE’s DHH teachers have offered praise for Shayla Boo and You. Rebecca Blanz loved the book’s “child size, adorable drawings, and an audiogram a child can personalize at the end of the book. What a delight!”

Montout is already working on her second interactive Shayla Boo and You book for DHH students, as well as developing new characters for a curriculum series.

You can read more about Montout and her book at The Press Democrat.