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October 2011

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From:
"Swayne, Dominic - swaynedd" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Swayne, Dominic - swaynedd
Date:
Wed, 26 Oct 2011 17:13:08 +0000
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Jackie,

We do everything possible to accommodate the participants.  I don't think it's necessary to have a translator present but if your son is on the team it would be fine to have him help as necessary.  If he's not on the team I would recommend a team member just let the judges know that "she doesn't talk much" or whatever genuine language they might come up with to explain the situation.

The judges will be both understanding and accommodating.

Nick 

-----Original Message-----
From: First Lego League in Virginia and DC [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jackie Meese
Sent: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 11:51 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [VADCFLL-L] Speaking for speech impaired team member

I have a member of my team who is speech impaired (originally diagnosed with Childhood Apraxia of Speech). She is effective at communicating despite this, but this doesn't always work, and it also takes longer, and time is limited.  (She understands what others say, as this is an expressive, not receptive speech disorder. He receptive language is near that of her peers.)

This issue is going to be amplified by the fact that it is my daughter (my first year coaching her), and she knows I can understand much more of what she is saying than others.

In previous coaching years, my rule is that I will not say anything in the rooms. I will literally put my hat in front of my mouth, and have been known to eat it or hide behind it so as to avoid any temptation for me to interject (plus if anyone looks over, it reminds them I'm not in it).

We're planning on having some prepared materials to help her communicate, but writing out what she wants to say to respond to impromptu issues is also not an option due to other impairments (she's on a first grade reading level). She does not have a assistive communication device, as given time, she is very effective at making herself understood, so she doesn't want one (though she has friends that have them).

In teamwork, I stress everyone should speak up, and she'll do this with her peers, and they have had weeks to work with her, but with the project and the robot design areas, this can be a bigger issue, as the judges are unlikely to learn to understand her in that short a time.

Her brother, who is losing interest in the FLL tournament (he's been doing it for 5 years, and he'd prefer to be in the higher level programs at the high school) may be in the room. Would it be considered bad form to have him translate if he is there?

Would it be considered bad form if I were to speak up to "translate"? For those who have judged previously, what would you think running into this from the adult in the room?

j.
----
Jackie Meese, Sr. Systems Administrator & IT Coordinator Institute for Distance and Distributed Learning, Va Tech
Phone: 231-3682                         http://www.iddl.vt.edu/
Univ. Gateway Center, Suite 120
902 Prices Fork Rd. (0392)
I am, and always will be, an idiot.

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