Thursday, July 9, 2015
The point that struck me in today’s class was the following one: “Watch videos silently before watching them with sound.” I don’t know why this struck me, but it did and it did with some profundity. I show a lot of YouTube videos and videos that go along with my curriculum in my classes. I have never thought to show them without sound first but after hearing this, I went to do this on my own today because, after all, a teacher should do everything she is asking her students to do. So for today’s reflection, I decided to do this exercise. And while doing it, at first I thought that it was dumb. I sat there looking at the picture trying to imagine what I would say to a class before watching it. I didn’t really know, and was at a loss for words. But then I was instantly reminded of a course I took two years ago in American Sign Language. I began to remember how effective that class was for me not just because I learned a little sign language (I know NO deaf people) but because it made me a more effective communicator. I seriously recommend that all teachers be required to take a course in American Sign Language because you learn so much more about how to connect to another person using elements besides speech. It made me a better communicator because when I started teaching beginners, I had more tricks in my sleeve and knew more than to just talk louder as many do with people that don’t understand language. I could slow down, I could gesture, and I could use eye contact and space around me more effectively. I still don’t know how I would introduce a video I would show silently, but that will come with time.