Why Sign?


This is the most incredible youtube video.  You’ve got to set aside some time to watch this.  It’s about an hour long and worth every second.

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7 comments

  1. Only about 20 mins in, but it’s wonderful. I will finish it today!
    I shared some of what she said already with my husband and he was awed by how much her daughter could communicate so early. Looking forward to finishing it!

    We’re still picking up bits of sign as we need new words. At least we can communicate even if I can’t with others without my CI. Of course, it isn’t a cure all (unlike what so many think), but I’m often lying down and the CI just won’t stay on, so we have to communicate without it. He also helps translate for me in other hard to hear places. I’m so honored that he is willing to learn so he can communicate with me. So many do not have that kind of support from anyone in the hearing world.

    (side story) My cousin has a daughter who is severely hearing impaired. (she can hear some with hearing aids, but they’ve always said she is deaf.) The daughter went to a school for the deaf in her younger years. She signs fluently. Her mother never learned to sign at all. That so surprised me when I learned my cousin didn’t sign.

    Thank you for the video share.
    I normally don’t even try to watch videos, but knew you wouldn’t suggest looking at one if it didn’t have captions. : )

    1. Hi Wendy,

      Glad you enjoyed the video. I realized instantly that since the target audience was hearing parents it would be fully captioned. She does a great job – she’s a dynamic speaker and a fantastic signer, so it is all good. yeah.

      It is amazing what a small amount of sign will do. My new physical therapist can sign. He does confuse signs, but from the context and the substituted sign I understand him when he says, “Forget now?” and means “Better now?” (Forget being wiping the forehead and Better being the same motion across the chin) I now understand the compassion the totally ASL dependent Deaf show for me when I goof up. 🙂

      There are so many hearing parents that will not – absolutely refuse to – learn to sign that it boggles my mind. My boyfriend who was totally deaf and signed had a family that did not sign at all. I’m not sure how Tom coped with them – maybe lip reading?

      Perhaps you and your cousin can practice signing sometime?

      Best,
      Marsha

  2. What an amazing journey. That is one impressive mother!

    The sad thing is, the first national conference on using signs (along with spoken language, naturally) with children with CIs was in April 2002, a bit before Leah received her implant. There was an effort out there at that time to help deaf children build their language and communication skills in every way possible. Medical professionals such as surgeons and ENTs, however, would not have known this (or cared)>

    The second national conference was in April 2009, and drew a larger number of participants from schools and programs serving d/hoh children. Hopefully awareness about this possibility, of developing all communication opportunities, will continue to grow.

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