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  • How a Teacher Had to Tell Her Deaf Students That Farts Can Make Loud Noises

    This conversation between a teacher for the deaf and her students on farts is funny and heartwarming.
    by Kitty Elicay .
How a Teacher Had to Tell Her Deaf Students That Farts Can Make Loud Noises
PHOTO BY iStock
  • A child’s innocence is often refreshing to grown-ups — kids do and say the most shocking things without so much thought of the consequences. One of the things that amuse them to no end is bodily functions and noises like burping and farting, which they often find hilarious. 

    Anna Trupiano, a first-grade teacher at a school that serves deaf, hard-of-hearing, and hearing children had to break a hard truth to one of her deaf students about the noise a particular bodily function makes: passing gas.

    On her Facebook account, she shares that one of her hard-of-hearing students farted so loudly during class that some of his classmates began to laugh. The child was confused. What followed was a funny but heartwarming exchange between Anna and the child, a conversation that happened entirely in American Sign Language:

    Kid 1: Why are they looking at me?
    Anna: Because they heard you fart.
    Kid 1: What do you mean?
    Anna: Hearing people can hear farts.

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    At this point, another kid who was also hearing-impaired chimed in, horrified: “Wait, they can hear all farts?”

    Anna then had to explain that some farts could not be heard while others were rather loud. “You know how sometimes you can feel your butt move when you fart? A lot of those they can hear. But if your butt doesn’t move it’s more likely they didn’t hear it,” Anna said in sign language.

    Kid 1: TELL THEM TO STOP LISTENING TO MY FARTS! THAT IS NOT NICE!
    Anna: Hearing kids can’t stop hearing farts, it just happens.
    Kid 2: I just will stop farting then. 
    Anna: Everyone farts, it is healthy. You can’t stop.
    Kid 3: Wait. Everyone? Even my mom?
    Anna: Yep.
    Kid 2: My dad?
    Me: Yep.
    Kid 1: ......You?
    Me: Yep.
    Kids: *Laugh hysterically*
    Kid 1: ...So you can hear and smell all the farts?

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    The funny and innocent exchange between Anna and her students unsurprisingly went viral. As of this writing, it has gotten more than 22,000 reactions, 2,900 comments, and over 11,000 shares.

    But though it was a light-hearted conversation, Anna says it highlighted some of the troubles the deaf community faces. “I know it started with farts, but the real issue is that many of my students aren’t able to learn about these things at home or from their peers because they don’t have the same linguistic access,” Anna tells Good.

    “So many of my students don’t have families who can sign well enough to explain so many things [and] it’s incredibly isolating for these kids,” she continued.

    And it’s not just in the US. In the Philippines, finding a school for hearing-impaired students can be difficult. As of 2000, at least 10,432 deaf children are of elementary age, and 32 % (3,401 children) are in public schools, as reported by Inquirer.net.

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    Anna hopes that those who share her viral post may inspire others to become more involved with the deaf community. And it starts with something as simple as learning sign language.

    “I would love to see a world where my students can learn about anything from anyone they interact with during their day,” Anna writes on her account. “Whether that means learning about the solar system, the candy options at a store, or even farts, it would be so great for them to have that language access anywhere they go. You cannot imagine what an impact it makes, and now is a great time to start learning!”

    Want to start learning sign language? There are a lot of resources online! Start with this online ASL dictionary, where you can search for words and phrases and learn their signs.

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