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DEAF-L: Deaf Deaf World

Key Words: Instructional Strategies, Deaf culture

Subj: Deaf Deaf World
Date: 97-04-07 01:42:03 EDT
From: mcr2582@RITVAX.ISC.RIT.EDU (Michael Reilly)
Sender: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Deaf List)
Reply-to: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Deaf List)
To: DEAF-L@SIU.EDU (Multiple recipients of list DEAF-L)

I am in a class here at RIT that is taught by the deaf students for the hearing students. As part of our class last quarter we had an activity day which was called Deaf Deaf World. The teachers and other faculty involved in the class got together and set up a room with tables all around. Each table was a location, one was a hotel, one a travel agency, one a bank, fast food restaurant, employment agency, hospital, info desk, etc. The idea was that "the tables were turned" so No voice was allowed, yet we were to visit each table and talk with the desk attendant. We earned points based on our successful communication with each person. Later we found out they purposefully tried to all have different signing styles and speeds. So we all did this for a while, I found it best to just jump in and try it, luckily they would slow down for us and write it if necessary. Then they flashed the lights and showed us a TV broadcast, a public service message that none of us understood! Well it turned out later that it was warning of a flood and we were supposed to go get a red poker chip from the info desk for safety. Without this chip there was a 15 point deduction from our score, and when we were only earning 3-4 points per table that was a lot. The second time I still didn't understand the broadcast but successfully followed the crowd and got it right. But I was lucky, some of the teachers purposefully took the wrong color chip to throw us off!

After it was over we sat down and discussed it, and it was interpreted for us. They explained that public service messages were not always closed captioned so it was hard, and that car radio isn't captioned so deaf people can't find out about accidents up ahead on the highway. The only place we were allowed to use voice was at the hearing club, but when asked where it was we said we didn't see it. It turned out the sign was on the floor hidden, they explained the location of such clubs wasn't always apparent. Then they asked what we thought about the activity and told us some deaf jokes.

It was a great experience despite how scary it was going in. They haven't told us if we as members of the second class get to do this activity again this quarter. I hope we do.

-Michael

Uploaded by: BJ Lawrence/ Kent State University/ Deafed Major