Sunday, 27 March 2011

Finger spelling.

I've just come back from my first class of learning British Sign Language (BSL). I have always wanted to learn it and now I feel like I'm making slow and steady steps towards that goal.
After an hour of learning finger spelling for the letters in the alphabet and practising asking what peoples' names are and saying what my name is, I wondered why children in primary/secondary school are not taught BSL more fully. (Maybe this does happen in some schools, but I never came across it during my years at school!) I think it would be great if children learnt BSL instead of French/ German/ Spanish/ Mandarin etc. at primary school. I discussed this with my sister and she agreed.

So, after a little bit of non-extensive googling I came across this article then this article (number 2). Now, why is BSL not considered to be a language? I think this is a poor decision that has been made by the government.

My reasoning: children do not know what nouns, determiners, verbs etc. are at primary school, or if they do they have a very limited knowledge of them; yet the learning of a foreign language like French or German requires children to be able to make these sort of distinctions, especially where verb endings and passive vs. active sentences are involved, when they are just starting to explore and further develop their native language. Wouldn't it be so much easier if the child learnt sign language where the signs used mostly define the words they are saying and also because BSL doesn't focus on words like 'the' and 'a' so only the 'core' words (and I define 'core' as nouns and verbs) are communicated? I think so! Children would love to learn sign language! It's a very active language that allows them to explore and move about. It is a creative language.
Some babies even learn baby sign language so surely it cannot be too complicated for children to learn the basics of sign language.

The government are all for cultural awareness and embracing other cultures but yet they see no need to teach children deaf awareness in school or teach them a language that they can actually use in society today. 'British Sign Language, which is the first language of around 70,000 people in this country, does not have the same status as languages like French or Mandarin in our schools.' (source) There are people in our community today who we could reach out to by learning BSL.

I am definitely not against learning foreign languages at school. The secondary school I attended specialised in languages and I studied both French and German and absolutely loved it (and even spent my first year of uni studying Mandarin) and do think they have enriched my life and helped me to develop cultural awareness; however, I believe that if primary school children were taught BSL instead of a foreign language like French or German and then were able to either carry this on at secondary school or take up the modern languages then they would have such a greater awareness for the deaf community and also be able to have language skills that could help them in the future lives.

(source of image)

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

I die a little bit inside...

...when people refer to facebook in 'real life'. Oh, it just makes me feel so embarrassed inside!
I know facebook does 'exist' in the real world, but when I say 'real life' I mean when people are actually communicating without the computer as the 3rd person. It's okay to say things like "check out the event I put on facebook" or "I'll upload these pictures on facebook for you to see" but other times it can get a bit over-facebook-y.

For example:
A: How do you know that?
B: It was on facebook. 

Is facebook a dictionary/encyclopaedia/the friend you are talking about? No.

A: Let's make chocolate pancakes!
Are you on facebook? No. You totally forgot you weren't on your computer and made some reference to facebook in real life.

A: Is blahblah going to the party on Saturday?
B: I don't know because she said to her sister's boyfriend's brother's friend's auntie on facebook that she might be babysitting.

You have just stalked someone on facebook and made it publicly known in real life.

I could go on but I have actually made myself feel slightly sick with how easy facebook slips into everyday conversation when it's just a social network. I also realised that I might be guilty to some of these traits. I definitely might mention facebook indirectly in speech without directly referring to the word 'facebook'.
Oh, I need to change my ways.
Goal: Remember what is said on facebook stays on facebook.

And for anyone who found this post by searching for 'facebook' - shame on you.

Hour, minute, second.

Here is a list of my FAVOURITE songs for this very moment in time.
I was thinking of doing this on Monday - seeing as how music and Monday both begin with an m so I could have in a clever, little way bashed out some alliteration. However, today is Tuesday, so no such luck!

1. Birdy - Skinny Love
My boyfriend keeps his ears peeled for new songs that he thinks I would like. He got it completely right with this song! 

2. JLS - Love You More
I know, I know, total pop-cheese! I love it though! I heard this at work and didn't realise it was JLS...I thought it was some old-school A1/ Blue/ Westlife song that I had never heard before. This is a guilty pleasure, shhh!

3. Adele - Someone Like You
The most beautifully crafted song ever! So much emotion and so intense.

4. Yellowcard - Way Away
The introduction to this song makes my heart get excited and just want to dance! A lot of good memories are associated with this song, so it's going on the favourite list!

5. Sara Bareilles - Gravity
This is such a sad song and nearly breaks my heart every time I listen to it. The video is so pretty to watch, I love the amount of light in it.
link: (amazing dance routine to the song!)

Monday, 21 March 2011

The very beginning.

Hello. Hellllooooooo.

Wow, this is a very big space to fill my voice with. I'm excited, very excited.
I've wanted to have a blog for ages but just could never muster up the creativity to actually start one, but after a few reassuring words and realising that it's not as daunting a task as I thought, here I am!

I don't want this to become a substitute for keeping a journal or a place where I go to to pour out my heart and soul. Although this is my blog, and it is definitely going to be infused with my style, thoughts and writing; it is most definitely not going to be a show-and-tell of all my intimate feelings and secret desires!

So that's essentially it in a nutshell.

Hello. Hello. Hello.