Tag Archive: ASL


As I prepare for the upcoming Fall semester, I am always looking for new and interesting videos, activities and lessons to add to my curriculum. Finally, after hours of searching I found some great videos that I can share with students that will peak their interest for the different facets and beauty of Sign Language.

Take a look at the videos, share your thoughts and share videos you  may know of that bring light to ASL that help students connect with the language and develop a zest for it!

Enjoy:)

 

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Hands Talk Too is all about resources! Here are some deaf news sites to take a look at.

These are independent news reports that shares headlines and deaf related news with the deaf and hard of hearing community. Take a look and sign to receive subscriptions!

 

Click on each name to check out the websites:

Deaf Weekly News

Deaf News

Deaf Newspaper LLC

Deaf News Todaynews

Great video to show an ASL 1 class about the differences between signed communication. Often students think American Sign Language is universal but it is not. The professional educator in this video gives great visuals of differences between several languages. Enjoy!

leadArticle @ Deaf Immigrants Event at Cal Baptist on July 28,2013

Website : Hector Project  (A non-profit organization that provides resources for Deaf Immigrants such as ASL classes, job search and referrals)

On Sunday July 28, 2013 I was fortunate to volunteer at the Leaders Empowering Advocacy for the Deaf (LEAD) event created by Immigration Law Offices of Hadley Bajramovic (ILOHB) hosted at Cal Baptist University. This is my second time participating in this event and each time I am blessed with a tremendous experience.

Speaking for myself, I often focus on the “don’t haves” in my life instead of the “do-haves”. This experience reminded me of the basic needs I have and the over and above indulgences I have compared to those who have less based on the status they have in this country we call so great. Side note: there are people who are citizens of the land of opportunity and their needs are not met, which is sad. That only those who the country deem worthy “elite” to have all the joy and prosperity that it has to offer and the poor, less fortunate, middle class and black sheep of this US must work twice as hard, live without and suffer to partake in a piece of the American Dream which never actually transpires. Back to the topic….LEAD.

As I volunteered as an interpreter, I learned so much about the level of language comprehension and expression in deaf immigrants compared to mainstreamed deaf society. I enjoyed finding creative ways to convey concepts of ASL at individual levels of comprehension. These types of encounters which were not always the case  opened my mind to developing my skills and enduring I provided accurate interpretation for the clients served at the event.

At the end of the event a gentleman asked if I could interpret for him with a police officer who was a guest speaker at the event. I cannot share to much of his story but the point that it was all too common of a story about law enforcement and the misconduct and treatment of people who are immigrants, have disabilities or are other ethnicities. His experience was sad but what is worse is the fact that as an interpreter, woman of color and a disability advocate it is difficult to not become desensitized when you hear these experiences. Law enforcement will not change but we have to equip special populations with tools to educate them and protect them against these encounters.

Law enforcement is not the only problem for immigrants. Side note again: Riverside Police Department shared that  police officers are no longer able to pull someone over and ask their immigration status (racial profiling) wish they would be the same where they would stop pulling over people of color based on ethnicity..any who…we will see how successful this is. Back to the other concern shared by the officer that immigrants are afraid of being deported or getting into trouble by being here illegally they are often victims of crime in which they do not report the crime because of fear and criminals prey on this population. The department is looking for ways to connect with this community to encourage them to stand up and speak out.

So many lessons in one day. To sum it up attending this event stimulated a desire to serve others, to appreciate the “haves” in my life, and as I grow in my field, life and educating others, I would like to remain connected to a cause that will make a difference for me, the community and the students I work with.

ASL hall sign

ASL hall sign (Photo credit: swenda)

This morning I read the article by Blogger Bitco David on Deaf In Prison  titled No Child Left Signing and the site Deaf Insight Blogger: Monica Hood titled Keep ASL in School Campaign. The two articles addressed great information along with the importance of keeping ASL in schools for a number of reasons. The value of ASL to both the hearing and deaf youth, the importance of students having language options and the awareness that having an ASL program in schools offers hearing and deaf youth.

In a discussion, I had a while ago with another ASL/Deaf educator she mentioned that sometimes hearing ASL students know more about the deaf community and language than deaf students. Which made sense to me, I don’t remember receiving in-depth lessons at home or school about my culture, language or history. To learn more I researched on my own and learned new information in college by taking certain classes. Deaf youth should have the same option as hearing youth when taking ASL or deaf culture courses. They need to understand the importance of their history, language and culture along with other experiences to  develop a positive self-identity. As well as deaf youth need to see how much their language is valued and appreciated that hearing students all over are passionate about learning it and making a difference in the community. This would also encourage deaf youth to get involved to make a difference as their parents and ancestors have to fight for equality and access.

For hearing students ASL is a great option, not only for foreign language requirements and it is different from Spanish but ASL opens doors to so much more. Students can get involved in the community and make a difference by advocating, educating and promoting an awareness of  ASL and the community. This can be accomplished as early as the first course they take and continued through higher education. Once students connect with this mission it can be carried over into employment especially in places where the door has been closed to the deaf community due to discrimination. They can bring to light the needs of the deaf community and how they can be met through equal access and deaf friendly approaches. This is what both of the communities need; support and purpose.

The thought of losing ASL in hearing, mainstream or deaf schools is saddening as it has been a door of opportunity in so many ways. As a teacher I hear the stories from hearing students sharing with me even after leaving my program. Uplifting stories of accomplishment and success, of how they made a difference with one simple act of kindness or education. Deaf students share  how they feel empowered and know how to educate for their rights because of experiences they or family members  had, understanding the value in who they are and their language because of learning something they did not know in an ASL class or from an ASL professional. I watch in awe my students signing with deaf individuals as I see the excitement on both people’s faces that a person took the time to learn my language and the other person happy their signs can be understood.

English: Community Center for the Deaf & Hard ...

English: Community Center for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The one experience I wish would grow is he number of deaf events in our areas and the number of deaf that attend the events we do have. Often, ASL students go to deaf events in droves looking to experience a deaf encounter:) and practice the skills they are learning but the opportunities are not always there. As a result, they go through the event signing with another hearing person which is great because they are signing but it is not the same as signing with a deaf person which is what they need. I support more events where ASL students support each other signing but I also support deaf events in which hearing and deaf connect. In hearing and deaf connections students are more likely to learn a wealth of information than what cannot be covered in class. Such as, community signs, social etiquette and facial expressions which seems to be one of the number one struggles for hearing people. We need to connect and continue to bridge the gap between the two communities which would convey the importance of having ASL in the schools, equal access in the business world and communities and deaf-friendly experiences wherever we go. It starts with this generation because they will carry the torch and make a difference.

In closing, be the difference you want to see, encourage others to make a difference and support keeping ASL in schools!

No Child Left Signing.

http://www.democratandchronicle.com/article/20130610/BUSINESS/306100003/daron-ladson-interpreter-hot-jobs?utm_source=Suggestions+for+Reading&utm_campaign=CC+05%2F10&utm_medium=email&gcheck=1

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=me.mimix.roid

Deafhood Discussions

A few years ago I encountered the word “Deafhood” at first glance I assumed it was a label for the deaf community, the unity of it or deaf identity. As years have passed with more research I am learning more about “deafhood” and its imprtance to deaf individuals.I have read  different perspectives on this term/concept anyhow I attached five videos of an interview with  Paddy Ladd(the person who coined the term deafhood) interviewed by Joey Baer (www.joeybaer.com)

Feel free to share your thoughts on this “Deafhood”.