Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Talking and listening, still early in Phase 1B

We're into "16 Pictures".

(O.K., if you're just an eavesdropper, it goes like this: There are identical pairs of sixteen little scenes and a barrier so that the GPs and the nurturer cannot see each other's scenes. The nurturer has to ask the GPs questions in order to arrange his scenes in the same order as theirs. It took us half an hour to get through four simple scenes. The next session, the nurturer and GPs change roles, the GPs having seen how the nurturer asks such questions as "How many mountains are in your picture? Is there a girl on the second mountain?" It must all be done monolingually.)

It is still exciting to see once again how this activity really gets the nurturer conversing with the GPs. There is relatively little to talk about in the scenes--trees, rivers, mountains, hills, houses, boys, girls, and locations. Such a simple little activity, yet such a sense of transition. Our host identity has begun to appear before the nurturer in a tiny way, well out of the limelight of the big host world. Just before this we did family photos, which also contributed to our suddenly emerging host personhood within the experience of the nurturer.

Then we did a new dirty dozen. All the talking has really changed how I listen, as we say it should. I think we have basically the right timing in that connection--a Phase when talking would interfere with hearing (and hence is prohibited), but then soon a need to talk in order to keep hearing better. In the Ladder of Success activity, it was clear that our pronunciation wasn't working so well. Now, under the pressure to communicate, it would be easy to take pronunciation for granted as long as it "works". Gotta watch that.

So we also started doing the "sound sorting activity" arranging words (that is, their pictures from our growing picture dictionary) in columns such that each contains the same sound in a particular position. We chose first-syllable vowels as the basis for grouping into columns this time. It worked really well.

Well, Angela is offering me herbal tea with jalebi. See you!