ASL Week Nine (notes)


Hello! Have you ever met a deaf or hard of hearing person? In your school or at your church? Or maybe in your neighborhood? Do not be afraid. They are just regular people like you and me. Well, they may be a little more patient than you and me for several reasons: deafness can be very isolating and is often misunderstood. Deafness can apprear invisible (until they begin to sign). Hearing people can make some very common mistakes when interacting with a deaf person. For instance, shouting at a deaf person does not help them understand you more clearly. Overemphasizing your speech does not help. If you meet up with a deaf person, act naturally. Speak naturally, and clearly. Explain (using a napkin or using mime, or whatever limited signs you have) that you are just learning sign language and more often than not, the deaf person will patiently finger spell or write notes back and forth until you have established a conversation. I cannot emphasize enough that you need to act naturally and do not shout!!!!

Today we are going to learn about “classifiers” in American Sign Language. Classifiers help to make sign language more efficient by helping to describe some thing’s size, shape,  or to represent the “thing” itself.  Classifiers are used to  clarify and to add information. We are going to learn three classifiers today. The first is the “number one” hand shape. This classifier can be used to help you describe people-meeting each other; bumping into each other, approaching or departing, etc. The second classifier is the “number three” handshape. Many times this classifier is used to indicate a vehicle moving along-in a particular fashion (weaving, traveling fast, coming to a quick stop, parking, etc.). The third classifier is the “four hand shape.” This hand shape is used for a variety of things. It can describe a line of people; it can help paint a picture of a long fence, or describe the drape of a fabric. Classifiers are signed “C – L.” Classifiers usually have to be identified or introduced first, and then used after the initial reference.

Quiz: fingerspelling, time, signs and phrases answerkey-wk9

Conversational phrase: Where do you live? Where do you work?

Signs we learned today: weather (rain, snow, windy, sunny, ice, cool, thunder, lightning, cloud, storm); money (penny, nickle, dime, quarter, dollar (1-10)…etc.)

Deaf culture:

Hearing kids who get into mischief usually cover their ears when they get into trouble. Deaf kids who cause mischief will cover their eyes when they get “yelled” at. They will also close their eyes if they don’t want to do what you are “telling” them to do. If they close their eyes, then they can’t “hear” the instruction. Get it?


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