“So long, farewell…”

I hate goodbyes, how about you? I debated on whether that was going to be a good title for this blog post because I feel like “goodbye EDTC300” is a little too harsh. You’ll understand why I ended up going for this title by the end of this blog post.

This is my summary of my Learning Project, where I decided I would learn ASL. It’s crazy, I have realized just how little I actually know even now as I finish up my Learning Project. What I do know, is that I have found some great resources so that I can continue to learn ASL as I move forward, past EDTC300.

Let’s reflect on some of those resources, shall we?

Learning Project Post 1: “And we’re off! (Introduction to ASL Learning Project)”

This post had me very excited. So excited, that even though all we had to do was outline our plan for our Learning Project, I instead decided to start off by learning how to sign my name.

For this post I found a wide variety of different resources which consisted of many apps (which I later found weren’t all that helpful) and the really terrific YouTube account TakeLessons.

Learning Project Post 2: “A,B,C’s and 1,2,3’s (ASL Learning Project)”

This week, following along with the TakeLessons videos, I was ambitious and set out to learn the alphabet, numbers 1-20, and colours. The alphabet and numbers came easily. When it came to learning colours, however, I quickly remembered how with more you learn of a language, the more challenging it is to keep things straight.

This week I was filled with excitement about my learning project and figured I should probably learn a bit more about ASL for when I told my family and friends about it. I found a number of websites (“History of American Sign Language” Dawn Sign Press“The History of Sign Language” GoReact, and “A Guide to the Different Types of Sign Language Around the World” Richard Brooks) I planned on exploring for my following post.

Learning Project Post 3: “Standing the Tests of Time”

I decided to dedicate this post to the history of ASL as well as learning about some other sign languages. I utilized the resources I shared in my prior post in my research and they turned out to be pretty good. What I found interesting was that American Sign Language has origins with French Sign Language (LSF). At the American school for the Deaf (pictured below), LSF was combined with new signs developed at the school as well as those brought in from students to create the ALS that I used in my Learning Project.

American-School-for-the-Deaf-Connecticut-West

American School for the Deaf. Image retrieved from: https://www.britannica.com/place/American-School-for-the-Deaf

Learning Project Post 4: “‘I CAN’ sign!”

This was by far my favourite learning I did for my Learning Project. I used a site called lifeprint.com which broke down the learning into “I can” statements which, as a pre-service teacher, I loved.

I CAN for ASL

“I can” statements from Lesson 1 of Lifeprint.com’s ASL lessons. Screenshot retrieved from: https://www.lifeprint.com/asl101/lessons/lesson01.htm 

Overall, this site felt the most beneficial for those like myself who wanted to learn not only how to sign but also the history and culture behind ASL. This site is one I will likely go back to when I continue to learn ASL.

Learning Project Post 5: “Video Editing – What tool to use??” 

This is where I ran into a bit of trouble continuing my Learning Project. We were supposed to find a tool to use to document our learning for the week. I struggled to find a tool I actually wanted to use and liked so I ended up putting the post off. This is probably the trickiest part of learning on your own. Once you quit something it is so hard to get back to it, anyone who has tried to eat healthy or workout probably knows that it’s easier to just keep going rather than taking a day off. FINALLY, I put my foot down and told myself to get to it. I found the app InShot and it ended up working really well for me. I used InShot for all future videos I had in the class!

I tried out another website this week. It was okay, but LifePrint was still my favourite.

Learning Project Post 6: “Can you learn something new on TikTok?”

This was another fun week as I was able to try out another new place to learn: TikTok. I found a lot of signing users on the app, but only a portion of them really gave tutorials/lessons on how to sign. In the end I was able to find three really good users (@boonami, @thatdeafcanadianguy, and @chrissycanthearyou). I have since created a TikTok account for myself and followed them so hopefully I can come across more of their videos!

I also played around with InShot some more and was able to add music to my video.

Seventh, and Final Learning Project Post

The Learning Project assignment showed me how easily we can learn an assortment of skills online. Through mine, I utilized so many different websites, apps, and YouTube channels. What I came to realize is there is something for everyone, regardless of the level they are starting from and would like to reach. Because ASL is something I do want to better understand and continue to learn, I was interested in the history and culture, so the LifePrint site was my favourite resource to find. For people who are just curious in learning a few phrases and words for fun, I would recommend checking out TikTok.

I chose to learn ASL because I felt it would help me on my way towards building a more inclusive classroom. After actually diving into the history and getting to see TikTok users who are hearing impaired using ASL rather than just following along with someone who spoke what they signed the whole time continued to show me that this is an important skill. I plan to continue to learn ASL so that if one day I do have a hearing impaired student walk into my classroom, that I can hopefully make them feel welcome.

For my final Learning Project post I hoped to learn a song. Here is a very simple one I found and learnt since this is a goodbye (see you later?) post to my EDTC300 classmates.

Before we get to my video, I will note that although I am fairly musical, that trait does not translate to singing. If you would like to watch me sign while listening to singing in key, feel free to listen to the previous video (I won’t be offended)!

And now, until next time, enjoy!

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