|SignWriting List Forum|
Date: Fri Aug 25, 2000 4:07 am
Subject: Re: Pledge Alligiance in SW
Nancy and SW-list members,
I heard your pleas for a SW ASL version of the pledge but I really
didn't have any 'leads'. All we have is the Signed English poster that
the teachers pass around to each other. I loved Angus' 'childrenese
translation' too... "I lead the pidgeons to the flag..."! I made a copy
of Valerie's SW version and will be anxious to show it to the kids to
see first, if they can read it, and second if they can make a connection
to that 'thing' they do every morning.
Meanwhile, I've been meaning to post something to the list about our
seminar with Valerie in July. Just a quickie for now....it was well
worth the trip. The other two teachers, Lorraine and Kate, were soaking
in a lot of info about the origin and development of SW. Valerie is an
excellent teacher. I too was a participant for those three days. I know
good teaching when I see it. A telling observation because I've seen
similar explanations, that were modeled by Valerie, being passed onto
the students here in APS. The other seminar participants, Lorraine and
Kate, have taken the ball and are running with it! It feels so good that
there are two more teachers of the Deaf who are really committed to
intergrating SignWriting into their literacy activities with Deaf
students. They say they do not feel 'they know it all' but their
positiveness and willingness to learn and take a risk matters the most.
I will admit...I'm walking the school halls with a much lighter step
these last six days of school. It's reassuring and comforting to know
that what we started last year is not only continuing but will build
momentum as two more teaching personalities contribute to biliteracy
learning for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students.
I didn't mean to go on....and on....but....I must report or brag a bit.
Even after two and half months of summer vacation, some of our
SignWriting learners can still 'read' SignWriting. While I was in a
secondary classroom, 4th & 5th graders, I typed the words of the English
writing lesson that was put on the board using the signwriter. There
were at least seven SW questions typed on a page. Examples: Can a girl
read?,Can a boy read?, Can elephants read? etc. Monica and Danny read
each one without the slightest hesitation. You can see and feel their
great pleasure in being able to read a whole page of written text.
During a SW session with a group of younger students, that same SW text
was used to introduce SW to some new learners. There was one student who
had been commenting, "Why do I have to learn this stuff? What's it for
anyway"? When he was given the page of questions, his first reaction was
one that I think we've seen before. The length of the text sets into
gear that familiar 'it's too hard' response. Kate showed how he could
fold the paper so that only one sentence appeared at a time. It wasn't
long before he was reading the questions in SW and answering them with
emphatic, 'yes' and 'no' responses. This was the first time this student
was presented with a text written in signs and he was 'reading'.
Just one more....Andy was at the SignWriter today and he too remembered
a lot about how to get around the SW program. He wanted to comment about
getting new hearing aids with Mom. He was typing away when he discovered
there wasn't a sign for hearing aid in the dictionary. He looked at me
and signed..."Can make". He proceeded to use the key board card and
generated a sign for hearing aid, the face symbol with the 'ear'
attachment, a handshape, and two touch contact symbols. He decided he
was finished with his sentence. I misunderstood his request to finish
and was directing him to locate the sign for 'finish'. He signed to me,
'No, you know, period finish'.Andy is way ahead of me. He's using
punctuation. Anyone looking for that 'link'....that biliteracy link?