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From:  Lorraine Crespin
Date:  Tue May 23, 2000  2:45 am
Subject:  Re: Relaxing about learning...

Thanks for the information Valerie. I was unaware of the extra task teachers
in other countries had in taking the SW (in ASL) and developing their own
dictionaries. You all are certainly to be commended for the work you are
I become energized when I read about what is happening worldwide and the
doors that are opening for the teachers and students in regards to literacy
development and communication. We have only just begun in New Mexico.
It does not surpise me at all that your students, Stefan, are able to read
notes from each other because they truly know the language that the notes
are written in. And I agree that it is a strength of SW that even with sign
misspelling the students are still able to figure out the message. They could
be using the context of the message to figure it out which is a skill they
will need to use when they are reading text in German as well. Or it could
also be as you said, the students read signs in a "Gestalt" manner, just as
we do in reading fingerspelled words. So, with context and a "gestalt"
perspective they easily know what the sign is. I think it is a combination of
both skills and even more. In working with our students, I found that it was
easy and encouraging for them to just go ahead and write the sign as they
thought it should be. Often they tutored each other and had discussions about
the finer details of the sign and how it should be notated. Cecilia Flood
commented that what they were doing was really discussing the metalinguistics
of their language. Ten and eleven year olds! It is all very exciting.

  Replies Author Date
3444 SignWritingSite is improving... Valerie Sutton Tue  5/23/2000

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