I met Bobbi my junior year of high school. I was so excited to take ASL and looked forward to this class. I will never forget the first day of class. We were all sitting in our desks – about 30 of us – and she came in and went to the front of the room. She did not talk. She took out markers and wrote her name on the poster paper at the front of the room. She signed her name sign and pointed to her written name. She did this a few times. Then she handed the marker to one of the girls in the front row. The girl had figured out what she needed to do and wrote her name on the poster paper also. Soon the whole class had done this. After everyone was finished, she went back to the markers – all different colors – and went through the colors and their signs. That was the first day of class. I was hooked and very curious to learn more.
Not only was learning ASL a turning point in my life – it is part of my everyday now as a teacher – but Bobbi was more than a teacher. I had a lot going on personally in my junior year. She listened when I needed someone to talk to and gave me advice to help me understand some of the things I was dealing with. High school was a challenging time for many reasons, but Bobbi helped to make some of those times more manageable, or easy to handle.
Learning ASL and being able to use that daily in my life has made a huge difference. ASL is part of my livelihood and a way for me to express myself at times when spoken English may not work as well. Bobbi drew me in with her unique activities and helped me to understand not only ASL better, but also myself.