Building the future with the next generation


Building the future with the next generation

Hello, I’m Sato Ishikawa from Japan.  I’m working in a cram school called “A-ton Juku” (Juku=cram school) since April in 2021 as a Japanese sign language (JSL) user. It is especially for deaf children aged 0-18. So, JSL is used as the common language there.Even during summer vacation, it is quite busy and its children are more energetic thanin school days for sure. Anyway, I like it because here I’m able to work with a sense of fulfillment. I actually love travelling & discovering new things. So, when my students share an unexpected awareness, they also become my new discoveries.

Babies aged 0-2 years old attend our school from morning till noon, elementary-level students attend from 3-5 in the evening and junior high school students attend during long vacations. Currently, because of the summer vacation, I work from morning till evening. What I do there is not only taking care of children, but also office work including planning for various kinds of events. I have tons of work but I enjoy them.

My experiences given by those deaf children are like treasures to me. Through my work, I like to challenge many things together with them and create an environment where they can learn, play and talk in their own way. I think that is my mission.

I sincerely hope & believe that they will meet their role models including all the deaf, HOH & also hearing people and expand their dreams believing their own potential.

No wonder, it’s a little harder for deaf children to connect the world because often the child characters on TV dramas, cartoons, movies, and comics are always the hearing ones. However, when a deaf character appears in the media, they were presented as a lead role in a romance drama where only their romance is shown but not the normal activities like working, studying and playing sports. If they were shown, surely that would inspire deaf children with some light of hope for their future. Anyway, I shyly say that I dedicate myself everyday to be their role model.

Now let me tell about myself. I hardly could hear when I was born .I grew up with hearing aids which now I don’t use only at work .My identity was HOH until high school but after I enrolled in the university, the identity as deaf also arose. But I haven’t been able to decide whether it is deaf or HOH and it seems that either one is fine. At my workplace, I use sign language as a complete deaf person but when at home with my parents, I communicate through lip-reading and my own voice.

As a hearing-impaired person, I have had many experiences related to hearing. In the positive sense, I was able to experience more new things because of me belonging to a minority group. My ability to speak sign language brought new friends into my life. In the negative sense, there is a disparity in the amount of information we can receive. However, this happens less, thanks to the IT gadgets, but I think it’s still not enough.

I would like to advice to the high-schoolers; find out what you are interested in, then include options of going to university or vocational school to learn more. There is a career choice to get a job right away after graduation but there is also an option to deepen your interest making it possible to know a new world and meet more people. Don’t give up. If you can’t find what you like now, don’t rush, you will recognize who you are at a point in your life. While making your own choices, you will obviously face problems which everyone face due to hearing loss but your time will never go wasted, instead it will lead you to more fulfilling future. “If you keep asking what you are and where you should go, you can see it.” I want you to believe that and open up a new path.

Lastly, I would like to convey my message to the hearing people who do not know sign language. If you have a deaf or HOH person nearby, start with trying to understand them. For example, it is enough to talk with them about your hobbies. I think this step is the key to maintain a symbiotic society. You do not have to stick to sign language as a communication method because nowadays, there is also an application that convertsvoice into written words. Please do not give up knowing and understanding them before trying. Thank you!

If you like this article, please
Follow !

皆さんの友達にも届きますように。Please Share!!
  • Copied the URL !


To comment