EDUDEAF: Signing Consistently

Key Words: Instructional Strategies, Sign Language, k-12

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Subj: sign consistency
Date: 97-01-29 14:12:57 EST
From: smcon@AIDB.STATE.AL.US (sara mcconatha)
Sender: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (A Practical Discussion List Regarding Deaf Education)
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To: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (Multiple recipients of list EDUDEAF)

Some of the curriculum committees at our school are working to promote consistency in ASL signs throughout our campus in different subject areas, particularly social studies, science, and math. I am curious if any of you know of videos that have been produced that address this problem. If so, I'd love to hear about them! Thanks!

Sara McConatha

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Subj: Re: sign consistency
Date: 97-01-29 16:44:27 EST
From: careyp@earthlink.net (Phillip & Susan Carey)
Sender: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (A Practical Discussion List Regarding Deaf Education)
Reply-to: careyp@earthlink.net

To: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (Multiple recipients of list EDUDEAF)

Boy, wouldn't that make things a lot easier? Our kids are probably exposed to 5 or 6 different signs for the same words through their education. The only problem is, who decided which is the "best" sign for the situation? We don't have any Deaf teachers or aides. Hmmm...

Susan Carey
interpreter Middle School

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Subj: Re: sign consistency
Date: 97-01-30 03:45:25 EST
From: MaggieF317@AOL.COM (Thomas W. Flynn)
Sender: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (A Practical Discussion List Regarding Deaf Education)
Reply-to: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (A Practical Discussion List Regarding Deaf Education)

To: EDUDEAF@LSV.UKY.EDU (Multiple recipients of list EDUDEAF)

Sara--

At FloValley here in St. Louis, we have anywhere from 20 to 40 Deaf students on campus each semester. As a general rule, we make our own tapes of specialized vocabulary. This was begun before I was interpreting at FloValley myself, but as I understand it, it happened this way: Interpreter A would be working with Deaf Student 1, in some class, and the two of them would work out their own signs for various concepts presented in the course. The same thing might be going on simultaneously with Interpreter B and Deaf Student 2, and so forth. At our bi-weekly interpreter meetings, when sign vocab would be discussed, certain similarities and variations were noted. Eventually tapes were made in our Instructional Media Dept. The interpreters were the sign models, usually two at a time, one showing more ASL signs, one showing more PSE (initialized) signs. Every semester, various interpreters borrow these tapes from the Access Office 'library'.

The process is neither complete nor up-to-date. Most of the tapes are for the required general education courses and a few of the courses that are popular with the Deaf students, like computer classes. We have a good many Deaf students who go into commercial art, but none of the concepts in those classes have tapes (and they NEED 'em, believe me!). There is a possibility, however slight, that more tapes will be made within the next year or two, because the Deaf students are starting to take a broader selection of courses, so some poor sap gets stuck with a brand new course every now and then, and has to figure out how to sign all the technical terminology for astronomy, or something equally challenging. If we go ahead with the tapes for commercial art classes, we've got a couple of retired Deaf commercial artists here in town that we're going to lasso, and rely on for help.

I suppose, necessity being the mother of invention, that everybody else is doing about the same thing?

tom FLynn

We're always careful not to invent the signs ourselves, but to let the Deaf students decide what they think is most appropriate. The signs tend to stay in use on our own campus, because the incoming students, of course, hang with the older students, learn from them over lunch, etc... and the signs get passed on that way.

Uploaded by: B.J. Lawrence / Kent State University / Deaf Education Major