Literature Paper #1
Train Go Sorry Chapters 1-9 Leah Cohen grew up in the dorms of Lexington with her family. They had an apartment in the dorms on the third floor in the southern wing of the building, above the nursery and across from the boy’s dorms. Leah’s parents worked in the school, which is why they lived there. Her dad was the go to guy for anything that the school needed help with, he would take care of a tempered child, interpret to those who needed it, or to do something as simple as transport a blender to a dorm to those needing to finish a school project. Everyone in the school watched Leah and her siblings grow up, many times the Cohen’s would invite many of the students over for dinner or a party in their apartment. Their family was much known throughout the school.
Leah was one of the only hearing kids in her preschool class. She soon realized that although she enjoyed doing the same things as her classmates she was a lot different than they were, she was hearing and they were deaf. That was a barrier that she could never break down no matter how familiar she was in the community. Leah was so desperate to fit in, she had tried putting pebbles in her ears to resemble hearing aids and seem less like an outcast. She despised story hour which consisted of the students hooking up their hearing aids to the same frequencies and wearing their huge headphones to hear the teacher read the story. Leah felt alienated and alone although everyone knew and loved her.
Oscar Cohen, Leah’s father, was a well-respected member in the deaf community even though he was not deaf himself. He was raised with deaf parents and had taught so many deaf children. He was in it full to support the growth of Lexington to bring in the teachings of ASL to its students. He was able to recognize then that that teaching oral communication was not the main method of teachings for deaf students.
We also learn about Sofia and her life at Lexington. She went to a residential school for the deaf called Leningrad, there she became fluent in Russian and gained very good oral skills Attending Leningrad mad Sofia’s transition to Lexington much easier, she picked up on English far quicker than others. Knowing Russian Sign Language made it tremendously easier for her to learn ASL also.
Sofia’s family emigrated from Russia and while over there had to hide their Judaism, and once in America was able to freely practice it. Sofia found a lot of pride in her faith and her freedom to practice it. She took a Hebrew class to help her better understand her religion. Although this class wasn’t for a grade or any credit, she took it just as serious as she would any other class for school. She showed so much passion and faith that her rabbi, Rabbi Donna, offered for her to have a bat mitzvah. Sofia was five years older than the age that most people would go through it, but it didn’t matter to her. She struggled with some obstacles to get to the point of the actual ceremony, but it happened and it was the best day of her life.
James is the final person we follow in the novel. James comes from a very low income family who is very uninterested in his education. He would miss over half of the entire school year and it took him 19 years to become a senior in high school. His teachers consider him a success story because of his drastic improvements, I would call them more efforts. Most of his improvements should be blamed on Lexington’s five day residence program that he was entered in. James was offered this because they found his home life “inhabits their learning in progress.” His home was in the Bronx and didn’t have a phone and his apartment building smelled of urine. The school had to go there because they were worried about him for not showing up for the first two weeks of school. When they got to his apartment they came to realize that he just had no money to get anything he needed for school; shoes, notebooks, anything. After this he then applied to