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BrDevon

D/deaf And Hard Of Hearing Month

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September is Deaf/deaf and Hard of Hearing awareness month (Specifically the last week of September is Hearing Loss awareness week).

Three cheers for our peers who don't hear. (Fine... you come up with a better rhyme ;) )

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Culturally, "Big D" deaf usually refers to people who are born deaf, have deaf parents or are otherwise integrated into the circle known as the deaf community. "Little d" deaf simply refers to the loss of hearing to the point where unassisted, one can not hear, or even with assistance (hearing aids, amplification) making sense of what is heard is difficult and one must rely on other cues.

Hard of Hearing, of course, is the loss of hearing to the point where it starts to affect one's ability to easily communicate or understand what is being heard.

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Did not know this thanks for the information, my grandson is Deaf, was born without a cochlea in his ears, so we all got to learn a new language (well continue to learn and anticipate that to be a life long learning experience) he will be 6 in January and goes to kindergarten at the Alabama school for the deaf in Talledega, AL. But I have not seen anything from the school indicating recognition of a holiday.

being a smart funny boy he just taught me the sign for Burp yesterday, and for pirate on friday when he told me he was not going home cause he was a pirate living in my pool, LMAO that boy is too funny, and he loves him some grandma, and this grandma sure loves her some Luke.

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Those with hearing loss and deafness tend to be the forgotten society amongst Americans. Especially overlooked are those who have lost hearing later in life after they have developed fluency in English. It is automatically assumed that if one can speak cleary it follows that one can also hear - definitely not the case. My generation will face a lot of grief as they lose their hearing in the aging process, since we were born in the height of the Audism movement, and only the very wealthy or poor had ready access to Sign. The former as a choice, and the latter as the choice of the state, who did not want to bear the expense of trying to teach those branded not worthy how to speak. While I am happy to be fluent in English, I am not pleased that it came at the cost of learning Sign or being fluent in Sign. I firmly believe that Sign should automatically be taught in all schools as part of a balanced language arts curriculum, and all should be taught and encouraged to learn to speak as well as they can. I realize not all can or will learn to speak or sign proficiently, but to be able to communicate with the widest range of people one can will only serve to open the most opportunities later in life both in education and through one's professional life. To deliberately deny anyone the opportunity to learn a language or a culture seems a form of discrimination, whether intentional or not.

As an aside, I had a very nice couple check into the motel last night, both Deaf. I happened to be chatting with the desk clerk on duty when they came to the desk looking for what choices of restaurants were nearby. They were quite pleased when they noticed my hard of hearing logo pin (I always wear it at work), and when I was able to provide them a list of the area restaurants, based on their taste, and provide them directions. They were prepared for the usual routine of breaking out the pen and a notepad to do the inevitable exchange of notes. I was happy to save them the time and effort and to make their stay a little more comfortable. I hope they stay with us if they choose to visit the area again. I am trying to get word out there that we offer a Deaf friendly property. It is sad how few hotels and motels do.

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I am in total agreement, all schools should start signing with kids, as well as other languages like French and Spanish in kindergarten this not only helps people the rest of their lives to communicate with almost anyone it opens new pathways in the brain and makes learning even more languages easier for the rest of their lives.

It is not easy to learn a new language as an adult (as a grandmother in my case) but it can be done, the older 2 siblings of my Deaf grandson are good at both ASL and English but the youngest (2) was born into a home where both is used and he is fluent and actually signed before he could speak, now he speaks paragraphs and signs all his words at the same time.

Because of Luke I have met many Deaf people and witnessed the struggles they have to face dealing with the hearing, but I think the best advancement for communicating back and forth has been the smart phone, and the speaking text apps, type it speaks then it listens and types what it hears for the Deaf person to read, really cool.

I know the technology will continue to advance and can hardly wait to see what wonders will be available for Luke when he is older.

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Beats heck out of interpreters at 58 dollars minimum for a session (29/hour minimum 2 hours per interpreting session). The next hurdle is getting voice recognition to the point where it can be used to process spoken words into video of Sign. We are closing in on decent voice recognition, though... a few years back, SIRI was just a dream in an Apple developer's mind. Granted, SIRI doesn't "understand" everyone, and some of the errors can border on the comical to the tragic, but it is a far cry from the voice recognition systems of just a few years ago. I would not be shocked in the least if we soon read headlines that a SIRI ap for Sign has been developed, at least in a beta mode.

In the meantime, I have known plenty of people who use Dragon or similar voice recognition software to type memos and communicate with cowrokers because it is faster than actually writing or typing notes when one does not know how to Sign.

I am still an advocate for offering Sign in public school right beside English. Producing students fluent in two modalities will allow much greater access to Deaf and Deaf-blind students, and is less expensive in the long run as compared to providing interpreted classrooms and other accommodations.

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