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July 4th 2018

Sign language and deaf awareness workshop for Year 8

As part of their Enrichment programme, Year 8 took part in a Sign Language and Deaf Awareness workshop, expertly run by two Communication Support Workers/Deaf teachers from Greenwich Council. The objective was to educate the Year 8 pupils about deafness, and also to explore how sign language can be integrated into the Maths curriculum in line with the overall school objective ‘to provide opportunities for and identify the impact of the application of Maths across the curriculum.’ This was co-ordinated by the Head of Maths, Mrs O’Hanlon and the SENCo, Mrs Fitzpatrick.  

The workshop educated the Year 8 pupils regarding deaf culture and emphasised that being deaf is a communication and not an intellectual disability. It reflected the essence of Blackheath High School's spirit and ethos of creating an outward-looking community in which all individuals are valued. 

Year 8 learnt how to sign their name and numbers up to 20. Mathematical functions, addition, subtraction, and multiplication were also taught to an eager audience. It really tested their kinaesthetic memory! The girls behaved superbly and many of them have signed up to do a further Sign Language workshop which proves how engaging the workshop was, and the extent of interest in this subject. On the workshop, one student commented: "I learnt about the culture of deafness and what is acceptable and what is not". Another student said: "I learnt that what is normal to us is different to others."

Read more about studying at a private secondary school with an enriched curriculum.

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