American Sign Language: Where to start?

American Sign Language (ASL) is a visual language that is used by the deaf and hard of hearing community in the United States and parts of Canada. It is a language that is expressed through …

American Sign Language

American Sign Language (ASL) is a visual language that is used by the deaf and hard of hearing community in the United States and parts of Canada. It is a language that is expressed through hand gestures, facial expressions, and body movements, rather than spoken words. ASL has a rich history and culture, and it is a vital means of communication for millions of people around the world.

ASL has been used by the deaf community in the United States for centuries, with its roots dating back to the early 19th century. In the early 1800s, Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet and Laurent Clerc, two educators who were passionate about improving the education of the deaf, traveled to France to learn more about the methods used to teach the deaf. They were inspired by the French Sign Language that was being used at the time, and upon their return to the United States, they established the first school for the deaf in the country.

Methods for Learning ASL:

There are several methods for learning ASL. So the best approach will depend on your goals and learning style. Some people may prefer to learn ASL through self-study using resources such as textbooks, online courses, and ASL dictionaries. Others may prefer a more interactive approach, such as taking a class or joining a local ASL club.

One of the benefits of learning ASL is that it can improve communication with the deaf and hard of hearing community. It can also serve as a tool for learning about deaf culture and promoting understanding and inclusion. Additionally, studies have shown that learning a second language, such as ASL, can have numerous cognitive benefits, including improved memory and problem-solving skills.

Start studying in 5 minutes:

If you’re interested in learning American Sign Language (ASL), the best way to start is by taking action right away. One great way to get started is by spending just 6 minutes watching and trying to learn your first 25 signs in the video below. It’s a great way to give yourself a quick and easy introduction to ASL and get you on your way to becoming proficient in this language.

“Practice Makes Perfect”

Practice is essential to becoming proficient in ASL. It is important to immerse yourself in the language and culture as much as possible, whether that means participating in ASL conversations, attending deaf events, or simply making ASL a part of your life.

There are also some simple tricks that can help you improve your ASL skills. For example, try using ASL when speaking to deaf or hard of hearing individuals, even if you are not yet proficient. This will help you get comfortable using the language and will give you the opportunity to practice and improve. Another trick is to find a native ASL speaker to practice with. This could be a friend, family member, or a tutor.

Useful Resources for Learning ASL:

There are many resources available to help you learn ASL. Some useful resources include:

  • The World Federation of the Deaf (WFD) is a global organization that promotes the rights of deaf people and advocates for the use of sign languages. The WFD website offers a wealth of information about deaf culture and ASL, as well as resources for learning the language.
  • ASL University is an online resource that offers free ASL lessons, dictionaries, and other resources for learning ASL.
  • Learn How to Sign is a Youtube channel with over 300k+ subscribers. Their content and video quality is top notch. So if you’ve liked the video above, make sure to check their channel out!
  • If you don’t mind sacrificing video quality, Bill Vicars has a fantastic youtube channel that you can check out. In the playlists section, you can find a curriculum to follow.

In summary, American Sign Language is an interesting and captivating language that is used by millions of people globally. Whether you are learning ASL for personal or professional purposes, it can be a fun and enriching experience that can improve your communication skills and broaden your knowledge of deaf culture. It is worth noting that there are many resources available for those interested in learning ASL, including online courses, textbooks, and community classes. With such a wealth of resources at your fingertips, it has never been easier to start learning this valuable language.

Originally posted 2023-01-22 10:16:11.

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