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So, you want a workshop?
ASL American Sign Language (42 bytes) ASL American Sign Language (42 bytes) ASL American Sign Language (42 bytes) ASL American Sign Language (42 bytes)

In a message dated 3/14/2005 5:00:36 PM Pacific Standard Time, a student writes:
Hi, Dr. Vicars:

I am relatively new to studying ASL, but I want to get a lot better--FAST! I am a hearing person who fell in love with words--spoken and written--as a child and always wanted to learn to sign. In college, I majored in French and minored in Italian. Languages have always fascinated me. Now, as an adult, I'm finally learning ASL. I am taking semi-private lessons with a friend. The teacher is really good--she has a lot of ASL experience (although she is hearing too). She worked at the state school for the deaf in Riverside for more than 10 years. I study and practice every day. What I think I need most is to expand my vocabulary, increase my speed and learn more about the theory or system of ASL syntax (as opposed to spoken-English syntax.)

I know about the 12-day immersion program at CSUS this summer, but I don't think I'm quite ready for that. (And freeing up that much time would be difficult as well.) Do you know of any shorter-term ASL immersion programs in Southern or Northern California? I looked on the Internet and found some programs, but they were in places like Canada, Maryland, Vermont, Maine, Texas, etc.  I'd rather stay in California if I can. My teacher says there are regional and state differences in the way people sign and the last thing I need is to get confused by different signing techniques as I'm building my ASL fundamentals.

Our teacher is going to take us to the Riverside school soon (kind of a field trip) and I can inquire there, but I have been using your Lifeprint Web site quite a bit (thank you for it, by the way!) and I get the sense you are a terrific guy and an excellent teacher. So I thought I'd ask if you know of any other, shorter immersion programs I could go to this summer in the Golden State (I love the sign for California--how very cool and esoteric that it is the same as the sign for "gold!")

Thanks for any help you can give.

From: BillVicars
Sent: Mar 14, 2005 6:00 PM
I do "private" excursions with small groups.
Meaning...for $300 each I take 5 students to Disneyland on a three day no-voice excursion and teach them the equivalent of a semesters' worth of information in three days.
This is a killer deal when you realize that includes your ticket and hotel. (Plus transportation from Sacramento to Disneyland.  Plus a copy of my book.)
Next week I'm taking a group of students (sold out) to Knottsberry Farm.
Why do I do this?
I take one of my kids along for the trip.  I generally break even after all costs are subtracted, but how to you count the value of hanging out with one of your kids for three days eh?
Feel free to get a group together and we'll go to whatever amusement park you'd like.

In a message dated 3/15/2005 8:37:16 AM Pacific Standard Time, a student writes:

Hi, Bill:
This is a wonderful idea! I saw on your Web site about the trip to Knotts Berry Farm, but did not know if it was open to people who are not your students at CSUS.
I am going to attend a monthly meeting/lunch/club of deaf, HOH people and ASL students on April 2. This is the local deaf club for my area and it will be the first time I've gone to such a meeting. Once I get a sense of the people there and talk with some of them, I can  check as to whether anyone would be interested in attending a Vicars Mini-Vacation. I bet most of them have probably heard of you. Also, I can ask my teacher if she knows anyone who might want to go and I have a contact at the local junior college where they teach ASL (but I did not want to study there because I heard it is a "cattle call" atmosphere and hard to get one-on-one instruction from the teacher.)
 Since we are in Southern California, if we go to an attraction down here (say, Disneyland), it might actually be easier for us because we could drive there and meet you at the Magic Kingdom--or wherever. Is summer better for you? How about June or early July?
I am so excited at the prospect of meeting you and getting an intensive/immersion ASL class. I will be back in touch with you about this after I recruit a few more people.


Lifeprint Institute

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