26 May 2008

the research is over

by Cecily
Are you guys SO EXCITED to find out all about our elicitation procedure? That's what I thought! I don't blame you; it's a pretty exciting procedure.

Our project is supposed to be analyzing phonological processes in narrative strings. Unlike my old project which was just supposed to be analyzing any old phonology. So, we had to think of a way to get these kids to produce narrative strings. We decided to give them little booklets to draw in and then have them tell us about the stories.

In conjunction with my explanation of this whole thing on the first day, I also demonstrated an example of drawing in a book and then telling the story to the camera. My example story was about me and Lindsay getting in a plane and visiting Rwanda and meeting a bunch of deaf kids.

That day, 60 percent of the stories were about Cecily and Lindsay getting in a plane and visiting Rwanda and meeting a bunch of deaf kids. It's a good story and all, but we were hoping for a little more variety in the subject matter.

So then I drew a different story, and so did Lindsay, and we used these as samples for the rest of the days. Our stories are awesome and it was very fun to watch each other get more and more dramatic and ridiculous as we practiced the stories more (and as the participants' ages lowered). Finally today we remembered to film ourselves throughout our explanation and demonstration and it is pretty funny. Lindsay's story is about herself drinking water and going swimming. My story is about a lonely fish and his friend the cow. They are both CLIFFHANGERS so I won't ruin the endings.

And as we hung around at the school and learned more and more about AKR, our tellings of our stories shifted to include more AKR words and fewer ASL words. So that at the end, the last day, today, we were doing what was probably a pretty study-worthy creole of our own design.

Anyway, now we are all done with the data collection and all we have to do now is compress, code, and analyze all of it and think of something interesting to say about it.

Instead of starting right away, though, we spent the evening sitting on the balcony drinking beer. We'll probably have another video up soon.

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