Advice for Parents…

As a teacher, this is something I want to share with you. A lot of students, I teach high school, have phones of various technologies.  Depending on school corporations or high schools, there are rules about the use of electronic devices. Devices take away from peer interaction and learning, guaranteed.


Hiding the phone ain’t going to work.

Whoa! Wait!  What about using electronic devices for classwork or projects?  If our classwork and projects require, suggest or allow use of electronic devices, then that is worked within that restriction.

Otherwise – no. I find myself irritated by….the concept that the parents are an exception to the use of electronic devices in school.  I often find myself catching students on their phones (first, the subject I am teaching is American Sign Language and second, I am a visual person) and finding out that their parents are in contact with them, sometimes another relative as well.

Why?  Why?  I just wonder if their education is valuble or not?  Why?

Even on a dumbfounding aspect – employers contacting the students during school hours too and expect to be answered quickly. Really?  There has to be a boundry of respect for time established.

As a parent, I have to hold myself accountable to how my children learn and use phones/devices. They do not have phones…yet and when they do, they will have responsibilities and so will my husband and I.


Observe the students’ behavior and the information that is on the board.  How is the phone helping with learning?

I have other jobs as well and co-workers or employers know that I will answer when I can, often after hours, during lunch break or other available times. They acknowledge and accept that I cannot answer them until I can.  My children will have to expect this as well. I will not pick up my phone during teaching class to answer something, why should students do the same?

So parents, please please please think about how distruptive it is when students answer your texts (especially) or calls during class time.  Sit with your child and explain the importance of being responsible during their time in school and their electronic devices.

Supporting your school district educators and raising responsible children ready for the real world will go a long way.   Thanks!


How do you feel looking at this student?

Additional resources I found interesting (updated 27 October 2017):




Life without technology or global communications would be as complicated as it is now.  Dying one day without knowing why allows us to revere the natural world and our part in it, as well as resepcting the inclusion of our species within its circle of life.

why am I being fatalistic today?  The ways of the world for a long time has weighed heavily on my mind and my soul.  I fear nothing but death. Death, why? I do not like missing out on anything, thanks to my experience and an aspect of myself – curiousity.

April’s National Geographic covered the topic of future of humans, climate change, degradation of natural resources (due to climate change, human practices and behaviors).

Changes have been coming and they still will be coming. Genetic change? Here. Bionic implants are already here. Superiority, thanks to Darwin, already been here for a thousand years thanks to European “civilization”. Thank you, Charles Darwin and the scientists whom have followed afterwards.

Most of the time I wish Darwin never got anywhere.  The survival of the fittest doesn’t mean humans should go willy nilly on making changes on a genetic level that will impact our species and the world in so few generations.  Well, that’s already happening despite what Congress or the climate change naysayers are telling us.

Being deaf is a way of life just as being a short lady with curly hair and blue eyes. Despite the gains that we bring to the world, we still will be eradicated.  Someone who is colorblind appreciates what life has to offer until an implant allows them to ‘see’ beyond.  The gap will continue widen between people as they have done today with wealth and intelligence.  The next gap is between those who choose the natural path and those who choose bionics.

Bionics are just tools that will take the human extreme of ‘survival of the fittest’ to a level where ethics will ignored, be damned the human species.

With what we are doing to the world, ourselves with technology and war, has not life become meaningless?  Am I raising my children to value life, only to have it turned back on me just because I happened to be different from them? Am I teaching children to value the world more than technology only to have them make the decision to support linguicide as well as genocide?

I will continue to live…when death comes at my door, I welcome it.  No longer shall I look to the future with such curiousity.


Drawing by my soon to be 8 year old. 

via Daily Prompt: Meaningless

Visual Texting…

What most people do not realize about texting and deaf and hard of hearing people is the visual factor and the ability to ‘doubt’ the message.

I recently read a BuzzFeed post:

This trend has lately been translated into video-texting, so when someone signs LOL but ain’t laughing that hard….hello! We can see you!  This is definitely applicable to ROTFLMAO. I have a friend who posted a video about this, while serious, had definite funny undertones. I have to find it and post it here! See below (updated):

Here is Michelle’s YouTube Video about the ROTFLMAO Pet Peeve:

Texting may be words, yet it feels like I know what the person is doing in front of the phone. Besides, I have done that a few times, which is always nice; yet leaves a guilty feeling.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “It’s a Text, Text, Text, Text World.”


When I go into bathrooms these days, I look for the stall with a manual flusher.

I know…crazy isn’t it?

I think the automation of so many things created a downfall in human capacity to do things…for themselves. Motor skills, critical thinking, or just making sure the “water vacuum” works.

We don’t take the time to do things as they need to be done. We just assume that it will be done, period. Do we really want to go back and see that … thing still there?

I’ll be looking for the flusher everywhere I go.


Soapbox/Myth: Cochlear Implants and Reality

My first day of teaching high school, in four straight classes, there was a student who asked me about cochlear implants (CI). So I told the students the truth, the concept of cochlear implants is bigger than the technology. It can fail or succeed, we still have to look at the whole person, not the technology.  Am I personally in favor of it? No, not because of the technology. It is that people abuse the concept of CI to ensure “success stories” based on what the general population want TO HEAR.  To a few, being deaf is the ultimate evil.

For many of us being deaf is a blessing and miracle.  We get to live a life of our own making. Granted, not everything is accessible, we are further proof that humans cannot be static. Think Darwin and Wallace. We struggle, but what is life without struggle? Why deny that?  Our ‘limitation’ has made some of us strive in our fields of profession and in our personal dealings with the human race.

For that few who believe in that evil, they have the “power” of the spoken word which they share with the general population. What we have is a common feature of stereotyping.  Good stories are hard to get because they are hidden from “drama” that reporters love.  How many stories of common deaf people without CIs are out there? What aout the opposite? stories of people with CIs who have failed because they did not GET ALL THEY NEEDED?

Technology, as I said once before, is like the human body. It can fail, the question is that how do we adapt to the changes. Remember biology and chemistry is the beginning point of our lives, among a few other things.  So when biology or chemistry fails us, we supplement; however, we cry that if others do not follow through with the ‘supplement’ that their lives are forfeit to the whims of the ‘superior’ population.

Humans are not meant to be robots or to be defined by their technology but by their WHOLE. We cannot pick or choose but accept what we have within us and acknowledge that we have room to change and/or improve. The same can be said for those who choose the path that causes their downfall.

CIs are not natural. The technology is NOT a miracle.  It is JUST a TOOL. The WHOLE is more than the SUM of the PARTS, and CI is just A  part.  I can get past the CI and get to the point of the child by asking questions with behavior, language and education.  These are equally important as they are the foundation of the child as he/she grows up and go through the stages of life.

As a friend likes to say, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink it.”  One can choose implant self or another but do not expect a miracle.  I am sorry, this is a harsh fact.  There is a lot of work to be done on the WHOLE when you have only ONE part.

One cannot complete a puzzle with only one puzzle.

A ‘New’ Deaf Culture, a Oxymoron/Misnomer as it is…

I have a difficult time in deciding whether the “New” Deaf Culture is an oxymoron or a misnomer. It shall be an interesting thinking process.

An organization states that there is a ‘new’ deaf culture. Also “Doing Deaf Differently”, ummm. Do you realize that deaf people, their community, language and culture has been assigned ‘new’ by a society that continues to oppress nature? I do not see any ‘new’ Black culture, ‘new’ Jewish culture, ‘new’ Asian culture or ‘new’ American culture.

Why are those people so dead intent on saying ‘new’, ‘new’, and ‘new’?  Technology. What is “Doing Deaf Differently”? Oh, yeah…technology.  Let me tell you, the song is way too old, it begins before I was born. History repeats itself, once again and usually it repeats itself long after a few generations have passed on by. Sadly, that natural rule has been broken.

Technology, the ‘miracle’ and bane of our global society. Let me tell you a tiny little fact…. its existence is a…. tool. That is all it is. Technology is what allows me to use this cool and neat blog website to post my thoughts irregardless if people read, listen or just plain say – ‘she’s a old nut.’

So what is that ‘new’ and ‘Doing Deaf Differently’ have to do with technology? I really do not have to bash this old stuff over and over again so I will make a simple point. The little tool that allows the deaf to ‘hear’.

Whooo, whoo, jumping for joy, clapping hands, high fives, hooting … really? I am being sarcastic here… a tool that the organization makes a big deal out of being deaf; never once even thought about the Whole Person – i.e. Human.

We are all fundamentally humans. No. Matter. What. It is the human diversity so designed by nature that has allowed us to populate the world (to a choking point), manipulate our environments, attempt to become the other person – not self, debate and make war, if there is no love to be had.

So what is this ‘new’ deaf culture? What are we doing any differently compared to other subcultures that enables us to be unique once again? We are already unique – we are a minority with a disability that has allowed us to have a culture and language adaptable because we are…again fundamentally humans.

So the ‘new’ is actually an ‘old’. Just a ‘new’ way of naming something that has been around since ancient times. Honestly, that’s typical of humans, to rename something that has been old, instead of addressing the whole. Typical, typical.

Renaming the old, instead of addressing the whole? Let me explain something to you that nature has given us, well a story then I read about some number of years ago… There were Africans in the South of Africa trying to bleach themselves so they can be ‘white’. I can totally understand the political/social viewpoint (typical Europeans) of being ‘White’. Thinking about the biological aspect, why do you think Africans do not have skin cancer? People! The problem does not lay with the skin color – the problem lays with the political/social viewpoint of ‘other cultures’.

Technology. Is. Just. A. Tool.  Yes something we cannot live without so are we prepared to live without technology? Build adaptive skills? Acquire multiple modes of communication? Commune with nature? Make love, not war in order to survive? Think about it. For me, technology is not all that; yet has made it much efficient to communicate, which is neat ya know.