I am also a students advocate for our local school district.
Sign Writing is a paradigm shift. These children will be shaping
the future. This is an excellent tool that will be in great
demand. We all need to strongly encourage our schools through the
IEP to take these tools and fly.
On a related note, when missionaries do bible translation in a foreign
land. It is almost always necessary to teach them a written form
of their language first. They give them an alphabet and teach them
every thing they need to know. After that they have the tools to
teach native bible study and the necessary tools to teach english.
A lot could be learned from this work. I will be E-Mailing one such
group. Then Sign Writing will have a serious dictionary.
On Wed, 27 May 1998, Joseph Riolo wrote:
>Today, my wife and I had the IEP meetings with the teachers at
>SSSD. (IEP stands for Individualized Education Plan and it is
>required for all "special needs" students in the U.S. It is
>a plan of what the students, that is, my sons, will learn and
>how their needs can be met.) At the end of each IEP meeting
>(one for each of my sons), I mention to the teachers about the
>SignWriting and suggest that they can supplement some light
>activities on the SignWriting to their educational plans.
>The Director of Treatment and Services (a title that covers
>many areas) there said that he will take a look at it but
>needs some kind of "curriculum" on how to proceed with
>the activities on SignWriting. This is where I am stuck
>So, I am asking you if you have any "curriculum" that you
>can share with me. Then, I can give them to the director.
>I tried to look for it in the Literacy Project but could not
>find it. Maybe, I missed something. (By the way, I doubt
>they want to join the Literacy Project. While it is a big
>project, I am hoping that anyone can suggest a kind of "mini-
>I realize that this may be a difficult request to be fulfilled
>but it is better to ask than never to ask.
>Joseph Pietro Riolo
Good Morning Joe!
It is so wonderful to hear from you! I enjoyed reading about your family
In regards to your excellent question about curriculum...I am so glad
brought this up. It is an important subject to discuss.
The SignWriting Literacy Project is an experimental project to see if
is enough interest and enough positive feedback from students, parents
teachers to warrant the development of an "official SignWriting curriculum"
So developing "official curriculum" is the next step, after the SignWriting
Literacy Project is completed.
In general, we are providing instruction to the teachers who participate
the project. And we will definitely give every teacher and student
technical support. We are developing Teacher's Manuals and other materials,
that hopefully will provide some structure and guidance. But on the
hand, I am also hoping that each teacher will develop "different ways
teaching" the materials, and will then share their teaching methods
us. That way we can learn from each other, which will lead to better
curriculum development later.
So any school interested in participating in the project at this moment,
clearly has a pioneering spirit!!
I will be happy to send your school all of the materials as my gift,
understand they do not want to be involved...that is fine. Perhaps
when official curriculum is developed, they may be interested :-)
So write to me with the school's street address, or perhaps you would
prefer that I send the materials to you? That would be fine too :-)
Please send my best to your family - I can imagine your boys are big
All the best -
Valerie Sutton :-)
Sutton at the DAC
Deaf Action Committee For SignWriting
Box 517, La Jolla, CA, 92038-0517, USA