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Laura Bridgman

Picture of Laura Bridgman

Date of Birth: 12/21/1829

Age: 59

Place of birth: Hannover

Citizenship: Germany

The consequences scarlet fever

Laura Bridgman (Laura Dewey Lynn Bridgman) was born in 1829 in Hanover, New Hampshire (Hanover, New Hampshire), in a poor family of a Baptist farmer Daniel Bridgeman (Daniel Bridgman) and his wife, Harmon (Harmony). She was rather feeble in infancy - frail and sickly, and it lasted up to two years, but in general, Laura was perfectly normal in the usual sense of the word - that is, without any apparent abnormalities and pathologies.

The reason for the subsequent blindness and deafness girls became scarlet fever, which killed her older sisters and brother. Laura survived, but was left without sight, hearing, and in part, without the sense of smell and sense of taste. Despite the terrible illness, it still lived more or less full life - was seized by simple skills homework, started to knit and sew, mastered the gestures by which able to communicate with home.

In 1837, her case was mentioned by James Barrett (James Barrett) from Dartmouth College (Dartmouth College), deaf-blind girl, and soon became interested in Dr. Samuel G. Howe (Dr. Samuel Gridley Howe), head of the Perkins Institute for the Blind in Boston (Perkins Institution for the Blind at Boston). It was decided to put Laura scientific and pedagogical experiment - to teach her at the school since childhood; the girl`s parents immediately gave their consent, and soon - in October of the same year 1837 the first - became a pupil of Laura Perkins Institute.

Soon Laura has learned the alphabet of deaf-mutes, mastered Braille, and thus become available to others - she could communicate. In addition, young Bridgeman taught the Word of God, needlework, some of the skills to ensure their own viability and simple work skills. In general, the work, which was carried out by teachers, was truly a giant - unlike other pupils lacking a view, Laura was forced to overcome a double burden. Even such basic skills as etiquette at the table, a toilet, and other everyday small things, she had to comprehend how very real science. However, it was quite hard. Actually, Laura grew up quite a beautiful girl, she was at the same time modest and shy. Here`s how Laura described the writer Charles Dickens (Charles Dickens), who visited her in the Institute: `This blonde being detached from the world, having a sense of touch. The girl`s face properly and wisely. Her hair and dress gathered, with their own hands. All neat and skromno`.

With 12 years Laura began keeping a diary, which recorded his impressions and thoughts. Of course, despite the obvious successes in the sciences, it was quite difficult to socialize, and her circle of communication was, unfortunately, a very, very narrow.

Experience in teaching Laura Bridgman has been widely described and got pretty loud publicity. Dr. Howe and several other teachers Laura has published several papers in which they described a sequential process deaf-blind child`s learning. In the future, these works have found a very wide demand for doctors and psychologists.

Despite the fact that Laura, together with their teachers did a really tremendous job on education, its successes, many felt somewhat exaggerated, but it is this experience was the first example of the mastery of verbal speech, deaf-blind, and laid the foundation for the practice of teaching and the creation of a separate science of teaching children, deprived of sight, hearing and speech. Name Laura Bridgman became widely known in connection with the teaching practice is blind deaf-mute children.

Laura grew quite optimistic and cheerful girl, but sometimes too irritable and prone to self-criticism. In 1867 she began to write poems, the most famous of its work is called `Holy Home`.

In the middle of the XIX century the institution for deaf-blind began to open up in many countries.

The death of her beloved teacher Dr. Hou has become a truly great misfortune for Laura, however, despite the bitterness of loss, the doctor took care of it by providing it with all necessary for life. Since 1872-th, during the life of the doctor, Laura moved to one of the cottages, built specially for the children, there she lived until the end of life.

Laura Bridgman, died May 24, 1889, she was buried in the cemetery Dana Cemetery in Hanover (Hanover, New Hampshire).