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A Dream Come True: ICODA



A Dream Come True: ICODA
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 7 to 9
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   9.51

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    elf-esteem, self-confidence, founded, crusade, production, teaching, actress, performers, profession, academy, hearing, permanent, musical, honesty, technology, population
     content words:    International Center On Deafness, Patricia Scherer, Northwestern University, Academy Award, Marlee Matlin, Miss Matlin, In July, Center On Deafness, CenterLight Family Theatre, American Sign Language


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A Dream Come True: ICODA
By Joyce Furstenau
  

1     The International Center On Deafness and the Arts is a center on deafness founded by a teacher named Patricia Scherer. She was teaching at Northwestern University in Illinois when she began to realize that deaf and hard of hearing children had little opportunity to express themselves through the arts. She believed that participation in the arts helps build elf-esteem. She believed it would especially help to build self-confidence for the deaf and hard of hearing.
 
2     Patricia's crusade began in 1973. She began working with a small group of deaf children between the ages of eight and ten years old. She started a children's theatre as well as a creative arts festival for the deaf. Academy Award winning actress and author Marlee Matlin was one of its first participants. Miss Matlin said, "In all honesty, if there was no ICODA, I wouldn't be in this profession." She played the role of Dorothy in their first production of the musical The Wizard of Oz.
 
3     Located in Northbrook, Illinois, the center was initially known as The Center on Deafness. In July of 1997, it became known as the International Center On Deafness, or ICODA. Over the years, the center has grown to include several arts programs. The CenterLight Family Theatre features performances that use both American Sign Language and spoken English at the same time. The Story-N-Sign Touring Theatre "brings the magic of signed theatre to the hearing population." The performers are deaf and hard-of-hearing students who perform skits, short stories, poems, and mimes.

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