For my In-Depth project this year, I decided on ASL (American Sign Language). Now, this may sound like a considerably basic and uncreative decision to make for In-Depth. There are tons of other classmates doing this subject as well, what will make mine so different? From my perspective, it’s the reason why I chose ASL! The reason I chose ASL for my In-Depth project is because languages and communication are ideas I’m decently passionate about. I love learning new languages and that does not stop at verbal. Communicating with people is definitely something that we take for granted and being able to communicate with a whole population of people is something that excites me. I will finally be able to have a conversation with people I’ve always wanted to make feel welcomed.
My project will be over the course of the 5 months given to us for In-Depth, up until In-Depth night in May, and during this time I’ll be doing research on my own about ASL using online resources and books and collaborating with my mentor to refine what I learn and practice concepts. Just like any other language, I don’t expect this to be a simple or easy process, but I hope that I can learn a lot from practicing it. I will be keeping a log of what I learn by recording myself practicing the subject matter that I covered within the 2 weeks between meetings with my mentor. Keeping these videos will not only help display what I’ve learned, but also help me keep a copy of all the vocab I can look back at if I forget anything almost similar to a digital journal.
On the topic of a mentor, I do not have one yet, but I came up with the idea to contact an ASL professor at Douglas College and see if one of their students would be willing to be my mentor. This may be a bit difficult and I will highly likely need a backup plan if nobody offers to help, but that is what is set in motion at the moment and in my next blog post my mentor will have been chosen.
The final presentation of my learning will be a video of myself using ASL in a conversational way with hopefully enough vocabulary learned to make it a couple minutes long. I may also add in a small part where I teach a bit of what I’ve learned just to make it slightly interactive, but in short that’s what I have planned. My In-Depth is fairly straight forward and not all too complex. There are a lot of resources I can find online, but I will probably mostly utilize books because I learn best from reading physically and all the material I need are my hands!
Overall, I look forward to having my first mentor meeting and starting right away with learning ASL and facing the challenges that come with it!