TBC News, Issue 52


from Thankful for the Deaf Community by Audrey Shortreed

"Once people understand that ASL is a Deaf person’s first and natural language, then it is easier to understand that the best way to most effectively teach our Deaf children is through their own language by people who are native signers."


from ASL In Schools Conference: A Golden Opportunity by MJ Bienvenu

"Gallaudet University recently hosted a conference, ASL in Schools: Policies and Curriculum. There were three plenary speakers ‑ Steve Nover, Laurene Gallimore and Sam Supalla ‐ each with extensive experience in language development and the education of Deaf children."

"On the whole, most people considered this conference a great success, thanks to Laurene and Steve. Participants are now ready for the real thing. The next conference I foresee is “Implementation of ASL in Schools,” but I am not sure if Gallaudet is the right host for a conference of this kind. We need a place where the participants can get full support. Each presenter criticized Gallaudet for its indifferent attitude towards ASL in the classroom. It is indeed ironic that Gallaudet would host several progressive conferences, yet it still does not support ASL in its own classrooms."

from How in the World Have Deaf People Survived by Andrea A. Feldman

"The example I would like to share is something that happened early in my teaching career. Picture this scene‐a playground at a school for the Deaf back in the 1980s. I was the only Deaf teacher in my Elementary Department at that time and there were two Deaf teacher assistants. I just joined the department after two years of teaching at the high school level. I was on recess duty and went to join the other teachers on the playground. To my amazement, they did not bother to sign unless I was a participant in their conversation. It was not until later that year that I realized that many of the Deaf students were missing out on a lot of golden opportunities to expand their language because not everyone signed at all times"

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