Back to School and the Sign for “Smart”

I am planning to continue my college education starting in January. I lost such a huge degree of my hearing when I got sick while attending school decades ago, I could no longer function in class. We did not have the technology we do today, nor the resources for deaf people back then where I was living to make it possible for someone like me to attend classes. I became depressed and did not return to school. It was a very dark time in my life. That’s all I have to say about that.

Times have changed since then, and with the help of an ASL interpreter provided by the college in class with me, I’m feeling quite positive of completing my degree. I need 62 credits for this particular degree, and I already have 55 credits accumulated. This time, I’m looking at something in Social Services and Advocacy. I have some writing, math, psychology, gerontology and Human Services courses behind me, but I don’t know how many of my credits can be applied toward a Social Services degree. I particularly want to take Deaf Studies, but there are no classes in that field available in our current community. Perhaps when Fabulous Husband retires we can move someplace where I can pick those up, someplace back near the West Coast. In the meantime, I have a lot to do to prepare for the classes that ARE available here this winter.

I want to mention for people who desire to attend classes who are deaf, hard of hearing, or losing their hearing, there is another option available besides an ASL interpreter. CART services (real time captioning) is available if that is preferred.  @JBHORSLEY over on Twitter was telling me that this service has been wonderful for him. When the professor is speaking, the stenographer types, “professor” and when a student is asking a question, “student” is typed. This way he knows who is speaking. At the end of the day, he gets an email from the stenographer or typist (I don’t remember which phrase he used) and in that email is the COMPLETE transcript from everything that was said in his classes that day. That makes a wonderful study tool for him and he doesn’t need a note taker.

I hope to get my degree so I can advocate for older adults who are losing their hearing, as well as for mainstreamed hard of hearing children and their families. I know what it is like to be a mainstreamed hard of hearing child. Currently, I do presentations at schools and in my community about hearing loss and deafness. I am not paid to blog, this is just an extension of what I do in my community and the schools. 

Here is a lovely Signing Time video of Rachel and friends signing “smart”. Be sure to turn on the CC button if you need captions.  Learn more about Signing Time’s Class Room Edition at the bottom of this page.  

The Signing Time Classroom Edition is a GREAT program for educators who want to add Sign Language to their daily curriculum. This item comes with classroom guides, projects, such as the family tree, as well as illustrated guides of the signs in each lesson for the children to take home and share with their families. I use this program for the kindergarten classes. Learn more this particular program here: 

Learn more about Rachel and Signing Time at  


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