Morphosyntactic Empathy

I posted this on a class forum, re-read, and realized it was far too creative for clinical lingo… decided to post here.

I feel that I have had the most enriching, enlightening experience this semester working with 6 students with hearing impairment. They are all in the same X grade mainstream class, with an interpreter and pull-out SLP/TOHI/SpEd services. Five of them are fluent in ASL; 2 have cochlear implants; 1 is getting CI this summer; 1 identifies strongly with his hearing peers; and 1 is also a user of African American English (and not ASL). So enamored with the illustrative and comedic nature of ASL that my students so beautifully portrayed, that I took up a beginner’s ASL course. Inspired to learn more, I’ve mastered a few signs that help me when I lead sessions (but most importantly, fingerspelling). I’m constantly consulting visual ASL dictionaries online to translate and figure out what they’re trying to convey using their hands. Because ASL is so very visual and its grammar is so different from that of verbal SAE, digging deeper allowed me to also unveil the inner workings of the language structures in their minds, framed by the structures and limits placed upon their linguistic perceptions by their language. Not only can i identify their translation of ASL grammar into spoken English (eg, “Me eat yesterday” for “I ate yesterday”), but I can – just a little more clearly than before – understand their perspective, which is such a huge part of empathizing.

Morphosyntactic Empathy

My logorrhea has been less than chronic.

I was right when I predicted that graduate school would consume my being; I was right because I am quite literally being trained for THE REST OF MY LIFE, for my CAREER, and essentially, my LIVELIHOOD, until I reach the ripe, brown-spotted age of retirement. I took a break from health care training for the past day or two (time just melds together now). I spent quality time with my boyfriend, learned that my mother thinks I will marry my boyfriend, and got a professional-ass “curly expert” haircut for the small sum of $0. Productive set of off-days, I’d say. My hair is certainly killin’ it, but I’m sure this evening glory will wilt once I wake to face the school day.

In other and contradicting news, I really want to take care of something small and cuddly. You’re right, if you’re questioning my ability to mother something at this point in time. I probably DON’T have the time and definitely not the money to sustain life right now. But it doesn’t change the fact that I regret leaving this lovebug so many months ago…

 Image

My logorrhea has been less than chronic.

day 1.

Jenn, Amanda, and I [naturally] ended up with nearly identical programs, without even trying. I like that. I’m quite glad to see that two girls to whom I’ve gradually grown closer are actually composed of the stuff of FRIENDSHIP. It’s as if Harry, Ron, and Hermione were a homogenous entity of three snarky brunettes obsessed with neurons and human behavior. 

So there we sat, in Speech Science Instrumentation, damning our misfortune! Why must we conduct MORE ACOUSTIC ANALYSES .. at 9:30am once a week?! Was one undergraduate lesson not enough? Was the theme of post bacc NOT founded on simple harmonic motion of air particles? And I have to download Praat again… can you guys hear me weeping? That application resembles prehistoric cave paintings, if they were posted to a Mac OSX platform.

Why is this coming up AGAIN?

AND WHY ARE THE PROFESSORS ALWAYS TERRIBLE SPEAKERS OF ENGLISH?! CSD PROGRAMS! ATTENTION! The irony must have slipped right by you, just as my attention slipped as Prof stumbled over the word “fundamental.” Really.

Other than that, I predict this course will be cake. Boring as FUCK. But easy enough. 

day 1.