compromiseJohn and I had to come to some kind of understanding. However, I rarely use words like gerund and modifier and (heaven forfend) pluperfect in my classrooms. I suggest that students listen to their words and use punctuation sparingly. I ask them to read their sentences aloud to themselves and make changes as they present themselves in odd sounding phrases, in awkward constructions, in unclear expressions. I ask my students to turn writing into reading and reading into speech and then to turn that speech back into writing. I ask my students to have conversations with themselves and with the material they are exploring. And I think I understand the problems they have along the way as I think I understand who in the class will be able to learn certain tricks and practices and rules from specific exercises. But John confounded me. For John, none of these strategies worked. None of them could work. John is profoundly deaf. Because John couldn't hear, many of my explanations simply couldn't be used. In my office, John would comment that he could see pain on my face as I failed to get another point through to him. Or he would grimace as he read (once again) that all he had to do was listen to the words and he would understand. Margaret Weaver explores similar terrain in the context of the writing center (Weaver).
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john in context | jenny & sue
deaf:audist | hearing pedagogy | enfi | techno-teaching
city on the hill | "othered" outside
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