Deafness

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As a group we all learned about the positive and negatives of what is offered for people who are dealing with deafness/ hard of hearing in the San Diego County. For starters, Deaf people are members of a small and close-knit community. The shared sense of community brings deaf people together in ways that are enriching and rewarding. For example, because many deaf people have friends across the country, they are avid travelers. Often they travel for activities such as the National Association of the Deaf conference, deaf softball and basketball games, and other well-attended events. Rare is there a deaf person who hasn't left his or her state. Just as there are deaf people all over the world, there are international clubs and events as well. The World Games for the Deaf allows hundreds of amateur deaf athletes from many countries around the world to compete in Olympics-style athletic competition. Just like the Olympics, the games are held every four years in a different country.

In addition, there are a multitude of religious, social, and charitable organizations estab-lished, managed, and attended by deaf people. Rabbinical scholars might find the Wolk Center for Deaf Jewish Studies helpful. If the Deaf Aviators Club isn't your thing, perhaps you'd like to attend a reading given by the National Deaf Literary Society? Christine really liked how she was able to acquire information about the different colleges and universities that are helpful when having a deaf student at the ASL Expo in downtown San Diego. For example Palomar communi-ty College and San Diego Mesa community college have interpreting classes; this would be help-ful if the student wants an interpreter for his/her class. Christine was also given flyers for a camp cal...

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... group we were amazed by all the new technology that is offered for the deaf com-munity and how it can facilitate interactions with the hearing world. ( Cochlear implants, TTY, TTY-to-voice Relay, Fax, Computer e-mail, vibrating pagers, wireless internet services etc.) Even with the technologic advances provided by cochlear implants, implantation is not enough. A cochlear implant does not make a child who is profoundly deaf into a normal listener and speaker. Intervention is necessary in order to teach children with cochlear implants to make sense of what they are now hearing. This is where educational strategies such as oral deaf education come into play. So the next time a hearing person says it's a hardship to be deaf, A deaf child/ adult can just count all of the advantages on their fingers. Unlike a hearing person who doesn't sign, they won't have to stop at ten.

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