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sniff, sniff

Excuse me while I wipe the tears from my eyes. The tutor in Neff’s article was so…um…well…(sniff), “When the writing advisor saw David lean forward, his eyes bright, she knew it was time to write something down.? (245). What can I say?
It just got better on the next page, “It’s fun seeing the connections in your mind unfold.?
And what is it with these disability essays always bringing up Edison and Einstein?

I really liked the Weaver article. She really did her research well on ASL. I studied it for a year and being a linguist (in training) I am glad to see it being presented as a language of its own. It is not signed English so deaf students need to be considered NNS students. I really like the way she figured out a solution to her “problem? (our problem, being audists) and helped her and maybe her prof just see things in a new light. Deaf people miss a lot of what is going on…we really take our hearing for granted, especially in an academic setting. All of the little cues, tones and afterthoughts that aren’t part of the powerpoint or caught by the ASL interpreter or even things that don’t translate. Deaf students are often frustrated. Anyway I read her article right after the (sappy) learning disability article. I’m not saying that learning disabled students shouldn’t get a little extra patience or a different way to approach (isn’t every student just a little different from the next in their approach and ability?) there’s no doubt or problem with that – its just the tone and approach of the Neff article seemed condescending (coddling and handholding) to the students while Weaver took a strong approach that worked with the student as an equal to help her be a better writer.

Comments

I totally agree - and I think it is always best when a tutor, helper, consultant - whatever you want to call it, can see their client as an equal. We'll communicate much better, and provide a real service if we are "listening" or paying attention to the ways that the people we see are similar to us in the ways they succeed and struggle with writing, or else both parties will be frustrated with the end result.