The same day I gave a presentation on microbes in my honors class I saw an elementary age girl walking with an adult and her white cane.
When preparing my presentation I was certain to "dumb" down the information to make it easier for my class to digest the information. As I gave the presentation I soon realized that one my "dumbed down presentation was still too complex for the audience of honors students. This could be due to a lacking in the basic understanding of microbes. This goes to show that when in doubt it is important to assume the audience knows nothing which requires you to start from the very basics. By starting from the basics everyone is placed in the same category that allows for the whole group to learn together and leave no one behind so that the more complex information means something to the audience and they are more likely to participate with the presentation.
I go back to the girl with the adult and the cane. When I first saw her I thought I understood but as I continued on my way I realized that unlike my microbe presentation there is little background that the girl could present that would allow me to fully understand who she was and what it meant to be blind. To go to school and learn a different way to read, to be in a visual class and be accommodated for or not and expected to learn the material just the same, to rely on your other senses to guide y0ou through your world that is same to mine but oh so different.
Are we even able to truly understand someone else? Do we just need to meet them where they are? Accept that I can not understand you and everything you are but I can learn who you are.
This blog is a compilation of thoughts, essays, class projects, recipes, etc. from SNOW Athletes.
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