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Just A Thought

June 22, 2007

            If it is alright for hearing people to teach ASL, why isn’t it alright for DEAF people to teach speech?

– Gil Eastman

Categories: Deaf Thoughts
  1. June 22, 2007 at 1:46 pm

    I think that speech is very diffiuct to be teach and it takes them to learn for few year and asl is easy to be teaching and take them to learn few month and more social with deaf people and if deaf people learn how to speech and how often that deaf people social with hearing people and they cannot hear anything with speech and voice. Asl is easy for people to learn no matter hearing or deaf people learn. Does it make sense to you?

  2. C
    June 22, 2007 at 2:08 pm

    hearing can teach ASL, but, not always perfect unless they have MASTERED it which a few have. Deaf can’t teach speech because they can’t hear the sounds to be able to teach it. One would have to be able to hear in order to teach speech whereas one does not have to be deaf to teach ASL..it requires vision to learn it. Blind people can teach ASL and speech because they can feel the signs, and they can hear. Deaf-Blind can teach ASL but not speech.

    On a second thought, I shouldn’t say “Can’t”…rather, I should use the word “hard”, such as it’s hard for a deaf person to teach speech. I’m HOH, I can’t see myself teaching others speech, but, I can see myself correcing pronouncication for the words I defintely know how it’s supposed to sound like.

  3. dsboyce8624
    June 22, 2007 at 4:34 pm

    I would say, I hearing person can teach ASL, if they really know it, because hearing isn’t a factor. However, a Deaf person cannot really teach speech simply because you would have no way to know what the person said. As we know, even if you are an expert lip reader, you still really don’t know if the sounds are being made correctly.


  4. Spencer
    June 22, 2007 at 5:58 pm

    I actually think hearing people should NOT teach ASL. Leave that job to fluent ASL Deaf people.

  5. C
    June 22, 2007 at 6:18 pm

    Spencer, true…ideally, deaf person should teach ASL. I’ve also seen many deaf say that ASL really cannot be taught. It’s something that is learned by being around deaf. either way…many hearings that learn ASL from hearing teachers are usually awkward at best.

  6. Mookie
    June 22, 2007 at 6:37 pm

    That’s easy.

    I can easily provide deaf students “Speech to Text Software.” They need to learn how to speak property, and they can simply find the right words from the computers. Why would many schools continue to hire many speech-language therapists than deaf teachers??????


  7. anna s
    June 22, 2007 at 6:55 pm

    Gil presented a philosophical question for us to ponder and say, ahem.. There’s a damn good point he have presented.

    The ability and the inability to do is not the point here.

    CODA or hearies should not teach OUT OF RESPECT!

  8. Shelly M.
    June 22, 2007 at 7:20 pm

    I dont think hearing people who learned ASL later teach it..only CODAs. Also, I prefer to that those jobs be left for Deaf people out of respect. Two of my former classmates from the grad program at Gally U. didnt know ASL when they first started the program and then in 3 years, they got jobs teaching ASL at colleges. I thought they werent qualified cuz their signing skills were too English. My other hearing friends said as long as they can sign, it doesnt matter. Then everyone got into an argument about it.

  9. mother goose
    June 22, 2007 at 8:53 pm

    Gil Eastman was my teacher at Gallaudet when I was young. I loved him
    and his beautiful ASL. I have four or five videos of him and his sign
    gestures. I used all his videos to teach the Sign Language class for
    the older kids. They learn how to use the gestures and ASL.

  10. Kate
    June 22, 2007 at 11:35 pm

    Justmedeaf said:
    “asl is easy to be teaching and take them to learn few month and more social with deaf people…Asl is easy for people to learn no matter hearing or deaf people learn.”

    HAHAHAHAHAHA. No, no no no. I can tell you from personal experience that ASL is not easy to learn. I WISH it only took a few months!

  11. Erick Ketcham
    June 23, 2007 at 1:23 am

    I concur with Spencer. In my lifetime, I have only seen 2 hearing people that truly mastered ASL. Only 2.

    And neither are ASL teachers. So, this would lead me to agree to Spencer’s statement;

    Fluent Deaf ASL signers should be the only one to teach ASL.

  12. Heidi
    June 23, 2007 at 3:14 am

    define ‘fluent deaf asl signers’ because everyone can be fluent in asl. what I am trying to say here, I rather to pick deaf person that knows the asl structures, rules, deaf culture, sign 24/7 etc….not looking at how the person signs

    for example, deaf boy has a hearing parents, go to mainstream school but his signers are fluent in asl. he knows nothing about deaf culture or asl structure and should he teach?

    same thing goes to hearing person if she gets interpreter certification. Her signers are asl fluent but her fingerspellers suck. should she teach?

  13. Jarom M.
    June 23, 2007 at 4:15 am

    I know few deaf speech therapists and teachers that teaches oral methods…

  14. June 23, 2007 at 9:42 pm

    I think you are all missing the point. Just because a person can hear, does not mean they cannot be an excellent signer. I find it impossible to believe that there are no family of Deaf, either CODA or whatever, who have not become excellent signers. You guys are being too specific, and you’re also getting too literal. It was a question to ponder, not a real situation to argue over.

    As for leaving it to Deaf people out of respect, I think that’s not really an option. In one of my recent posts I presented an article about a Deaf agency that couldn’t find a Deaf person who was willing to run it. I’m getting the impression that so many of these positions are held by hearies because Deaf people just don’t want them.

    So, once again I state my position, which has yet to be refuted by more than an ‘I think . . .’:

    Hearing people can teach ASL bnecause they have the ability to see it. Deaf people cannot teach speech because they cannot hear it. This means a hearing person could show a student how to correct mistakes, a Deaf person could not.

    Assuming equal qualifications (it doesn’t matter if that can ever really happen for this discussion) then it’s that simple.


  15. A.J.
    June 24, 2007 at 1:38 pm

    I would say that the hearing people LOVE to take over deaf’s job. I am sick of hearing them (hearing people) say you (deaf) are using wrong sign language.

  16. mother goose
    June 24, 2007 at 7:56 pm

    A.J. ,

    The hearing lady who used to work with me while I was teaching the sign language class. She said that my sign was wrong and I asked her what was her sign…she showed me and I said, no that is not what they sign. She insulted me and said that I don’t know anything, ha! So I removed her from the class. The word was “lazy”. She signed it the wrong way… reserved “L” on the shoulder. She said that “L” has to be straight.

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