Regular Education Teachers - Accommodating the Interpreter in the Classroom
For many teachers, having an interpreter in the classroom is a new experience. Although there are no set rules for how to accommodate the interpreter, it is critical that the teacher make the interpreter feel welcome. In fact, deaf students report that when the teacher welcomes the interpreter, they feel welcome as well.
There are many ways to make the interpreter feel welcome, including:
- Talking about goals and expectations − The teacher can make the interpreter feel welcome by talking about his or her goals and expectations. By doing so, the interpreter knows that he/she is considered a member of the educational team.
- Providing a personal working space − The interpreter should have his/her own space to store personal belongings and to prepare for future lessons. The interpreter should not be permanently ‘parked’ next to the student who is deaf or hard of hearing. The student needs some independence just as the interpreter needs some preparation time.
- Including the interpreter − Include the interpreter in meetings regarding the student. Talk with the interpreter about what information he/she can share with parents. Talk with the interpreter about his/her perceptions on how the student is doing.