NCIcewolf at AOL.COM
Fri Apr 9 17:27:48 UTC 2004
I haven't posted in awhile, and had forgotten how to do it!! But Valarie
asked that I share what I've been doing with signwriting. I read all the posts
that everyone writes, so I'm still here...lurking about:)
Anyways, recently we had a Deaf conference, called Casa D/HH 2004 in
Albuquerque, NM at the Marriot Hotel. We had a wonderful time, and the theme was
based on Literacy. Lorraine and Cecilia presented the Signwriting bit (also
another person, but sorry I forgot her name:( ). Some of my friends who attended
the workshop were not at all interested in Signwriting, and didn't know that
the workshop class taught about signwriting (the title hadn't mentioned it), but
became curious afterwards. I explained to them what I have done with it and
how it has helped, not only me, but my husband and family as well.
Signwriting encourages writing, it really does, and I'll explain why.
I work at the high school in Belen, NM with a Deaf/Blind CHARGE syndrome
student. She never had any previous writing experience and had alot of behavior
problems. I just started working with her last year. I found she has autistic
characteristics and needed a very structured classroom. She understood
symbols very well, and picked them up quickly. She can see shapes, large lettering
and colors. So in using Boardmaker, symbols and signwriting she was able to
learn the word. She never writes the symbol or signwriting, she writes the
word. Since she is also autistic, she does not express herself like people
expect. But she is slowly coming out of the shell and has what I call "Helen
Keller" moments. The first time I presented signwriting to her she was sitting
down drawing the handshape (flat hand with half shaded) she all of a sudden
signed "know" then jumped up, did a little dance and obviously proud of herself
and continued to write. Now, she fingerspells everything and every word she
wants to learn. She loves to read and write. I use writing with pictures and
signwriting to explain to her things that happen along with signs. She
memorizes it very quickly, and it helps her not only learn the word, but understand it.
My husband who is also Deaf/Blind (Ushers' Syndrome) loves to use signwriting
with his A-Z stories and number stories. My children who are hearing also
like to read it. My son has severe ADHD and it helps him with visual cues in
reading since his first language is ASL.
Anyways, that's all I have for now:) Thanks to everyone who presented
Signwriting at the Casa D/HH conference! You all did a super job!
Smiles everyone and have a happy Easter!!
Nancy a cole
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