Shane's Glowing Intro

Charles Butler chazzer3332000 at YAHOO.COM
Fri Jan 5 14:00:21 UTC 2007

In teaching SW I have had lefties and righties in my classes, and part of the difficulty sometimes is that the lefties have gotten so used to mirroring, that trying to get them to write down their own hands instead of everyone else's is a challenge.
  Now, in the long term, I suppose a button in sign text that could take an entire sign, and reverse the image to left hand prime production would be ideal, that is a challenge for a programmer to work on, as it requires a full understanding of the whole production of a sign and reversing everything directionally if it is a personal sign and not one pointing at an object not present (like setting up multiple people).  Doing that will require a root understanding of the grammar of an utterance, and that will be another hurdle to jump over.
  I learned SW when it was "receptive" 20 years ago, writing down the other person's hands, like actually copying a videotape and writing down with the right hand of the other person on the left, and the left hand on the right.  We did that for more than 5 years until the Deaf said "expressive" sign is the better way to write as one can always write one's own hands when no one else is there.  
  Changing in my own head from "mirror" to "expressive" has been just as much of a challenge.
  Charles Butler

Pauline Roberts <capyboppy at> wrote:
  Thanks for the warm welcome Val.

I think I need to clarify though the difficulties I mean regarding the left
handed issues. When I was learning the guitar, to move on from basic
chords I needed to find a chord book that had the chord boxes. I don't
know if people are familiar with these, bout they are a square box like
grid, which represents the frets on the neck of the guitar, and also the
six strings. You then have black or white dots representing where the
fingers go. This has always been a problem as a leftie just can't look at
the box and instantly know where the fingers go. Especially if a complex
chord. We either have to keep going over each "dot" over and over again in
our heads til it sinks in where it would be, or if it is thin paper, look
through the reverse side to see. All this took time and was frustrating and
confusing for the learning. I see a similar problem with Sign writing that
is already written down in the normal right handed format, as again, I
should imagine everything will need to be turned in reverse during the
learning process. Like you say, writing it down by the leftie in a left
handed format would be no problem. I do remember when learning new
vocabulary at level 1 BSL, I would write down brief descriptions at the
side of any words I thought I would have a problem remembering. This was
fine until some of the others saw what I was doing and asked if they could
borrow/photo copy my notes. When they realised the descriptions were left
handed it totally confused them and most of them decided to leave it, as it
would be more work having to convert everything to the opposite:-( No easy
answer I suppose!

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