Sunday, October 31, 2010

From The Trenches

I've been teaching Simultaneous English to ASL this semester. I have twelve students and this is what I can say about all of them:

1. They have learned to trust me, to trust that what I tell them is what I truly believe will work.

2. They are willing to make changes in how they think about language, culture and interpreting.

3. They all want to "convey the message faithfully."

4. They are all making progress.

Now here's what I can say about me as the instructor.

1. I do not have enough time in class (1 hour, 15 minutes, twice a week) to instruct, then model, then have them practice. I leave classes wanting to have done more,

2. I owe part of any success I am having to for providing my students with a virtual language community.

3. I owe another part of any success I am having to iTunes and the free podcasts they offer, which provides unlimited numbers of source material on a variety of subjects. (In particular, TedTalk video podcasts.)

4. I finally got them to stop signing "HAPPEN" "WILL" and "HAVE" in every sentence.

It's a daunting task to teach this class. As much as it is on them to "do the work" so it is on me to "guide the work."

I pray I am on the right track.


KL said...

I have found that many people have the hardest time with dropping words when they start signing because they don't realize that it is a language of it's own. It is not just English in signs. It has it's own lexicon and rules and everything.

That being said, I suck at it myself, I think! LOL

"Meesh" said...

Well it's one big ol' circle of life I tell ya'!! Because we owe now and will owe in our professional futures, any part of our success to you Faith! What a tremendous guide you have been. I mean really, being pushed ALL THE WAY to the edge is not an easy task, neither for you or us. But hey, we're all makin' it!! So thanks for where you've brought us thus far!