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From:  Valerie Sutton
Date:  Sat Mar 11, 2000  12:40 am
Subject:  Re: SignWriting as a gateway?

On 3/10/00, Don & Theresa G wrote:
>I mentioned SW to my wife, who is an elementary teacher of the deaf at a
>school for the deaf. One thing she said, in addition to the fact that SW is
>not "English" (as it shouldn't be), is that for her, she finds no way she
>could make room in her schedule to teach English AND SW, even if she were so
>inclined. How do the classroom teachers out there make time for both SW and
>English instruction? How do the classroom teachers help the kids make the
>connections and transitions between SW and English?
>--Donald Grushkin
> Ph.D., Language, Reading & Culture (Bilingual Education)

SignWriting List
March 10, 2000

Of course the teachers who are teaching SignWriting are the ones to
really answer this question, Don, but it is a good question that your
wife poses, and I do have one thought....

I know the reality in the school systems...teachers are not given
enough time to try out new ideas. To give you an example, I donated
some SW materials to a teacher in New York State, and the poor
teacher was given exactly "fifteen minutes" to introduce SignWriting!
Kind of silly, don't you think? smile

So the barrier of money is taken away, because we donate the
materials to teachers of deaf children, but the barrier of
"scheduling enough time" can still be an issue depending on the
school. Administrators seem happy to accept the donated materials,
but they sometimes do not give the teacher enough time to use them...

Now...having said that....there is a way around this....Your wife is
welcome to have some donated materials if she would like, and rather
than teaching it officially, she could show the videos in class once,
and then ask who likes it? Then those students who are interested,
could take some books and videos home to share with their parents.

That will not take much time from class...

Also SW can be useful in private tutoring, with students who are
having trouble learning to read and write English seems
to inspire reading and writing in if they are being
tutored privately, that will not take time from class...

So there are ways to get around the scheduling issues...

Val ;-)


Valerie Sutton


SignWriting List Archive

Deaf Action Committee For SignWriting
Box 517, La Jolla, CA, 92038-0517, USA

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