ASL University | Bookstore | Catalog | Dictionary | Lessons | Resources | Syllabi | Library | Volume 1, Issue 19, February 2005 | William G. Vicars Ed.D., Editor


Hello ASL Heroes!  Here's hoping this email finds you happy and well.

-- Bill

In a message dated 2/22/2005 8:50:46 AM Pacific Daylight Time, cevans@_____ writes:
I just found your site and I am excited to be able to use it. I am currently enrolled in class and will soon graduate. I am taking a class in ASL linguistics and have had the following question posed to me for homework. When do you use the Lexicalized sign or the ASL sign for the following words? #BUSY BUSY, #CAR , #BED, BED.
When would you use one over the other? When would your fingerspell #BUSY instead of using the BUSY? etc..

In a message dated 2/22/2005 12:05:28 PM Pacific Daylight Time, BillVicars writes:
Good question. And did your teacher assign me as the person to contact to do your homework for you or did he mention a textbook where you could find that information?
Please don't be offended by what I just said. But seriously, what book or resource has he provided to you to find the answer?
Now here's "one" example of when I'd use a lexicalized fingerspelled sign over the regular sign:
* If I'm holding a sandwich in one hand.
If you DO find a clear, well described set of "rules" for when to and not to use lexicalized fingerspelling I'd love to see it.
Dr. Bill

Note to readers: The word "lexical" means "word like."  To lexicalize something means to make it become "word like."  In the case of fingerspelling, if you "lexicalize it" you cause it to look more like a sign.  You may add movement, drop letters, and or alter the palm orientation. Some fingerspelled words are used so frequently that signers tend to shorten, abbreviate, or "slur" them.  After a while these fingerspelled words end up looking more like a single sign rather than a bunch of separate letters.

In a message dated 2/22/2005 12:21:54 PM Pacific Daylight Time, cevans@____ writes:
No, no textbook type research. We are just supposed to ask people who are deaf, Coda's or interpreter's what they do and then write a one page essay on it. I just chose you because I happened on your web site and I was impressed that you might have a different perspective. So any more words of wisdom? I would really appreciate your response.


Ah, I see. are a few more situations for lexicalization and/or to spell something instead of sign it:
1. To emphasize a point.
2. To make a comparison (spell on different hands)
3. To incorporate directionality (establish verb agreement): Example: GIVE B-A-C-K-(to a specific person.) The sign moves in a specific direction.
4. To save effort. It is faster to spell C-A-R than to sign CAR. It is faster and easier to spell D-A-Y than to sign DAY.
5. Older signers who learned ASL before the introduction of various signed concepts. These individuals continue to fingerspell such concepts instead of adopting the new signs.
6. To allow for one handed signing while driving, eating, or similar activities.
7.  To resist changes to your language that you are not comfortable with.  For example, using the lexicalized form of "email"  (The letters "E-I-L" -- moving toward the person receiving the email) rather than adopting the sign "EMAIL."
--Dr. Vicars

In a message dated 1/27/2005 6:11:34 PM Pacific Standard Time, _______@____ writes:
Dear Bill,

A little background: both of my grandparents on my Dad's side were
Deaf. They met at Gallaudet when they attended (probably in the 40s),
and married and raised five hearing children in Minnesota. Their
youngest son, my dad, married my mother who later became an interpreter
by trade. While I've always been able to fingerspell fairly well, my
grandparents passed away before I was old enough to appreciate the
wonderful things they could teach me. Now, my newfound interest in
signing is the result of a new employee at work (Apple Computer) who is
Deaf. While he reads lips amazingly well, I think he'd love to have at
least one person he could sign with while at work.

I just wanted to let you know that your site is quite an
impressive piece of work. It is saving me loads of money (I'm a recent
college grad), and I'm learning a great deal. I plan on purchasing your
CDs as soon as the finances allow, and can't wait to improve my signing

Just one question: I'm kind of learning ASL on the sly. When I feel I'm
ready to try it out in the real world, any non-cheesy way you could
recommend I let Jeremy know I've been practicing? I certainly don't
want to embarrass him, but I think he'd enjoy knowing someone made the

Thanks a million,

Boston, MA
No need to put off communicating with your coworker until later.  Might as well start communicating now  It will help speed up your language acquisition.
Take care,
Dr. Bill

In a message dated 1/27/2005 10:37:57 PM Pacific Standard Time, Isbelrosa2@_____ (and advocate) writes:
<<Dear Bill:
This is lady is having a hard time getting an Interpreter in School.  I am not sure if she is deaf or hearing or hearing impaired??  This young person is looking for a FULL TIME Interpreter in school.  But they are refusing to help them not PROVIDED NO Interpreter in past 2 or 5 years:
<<<I am DEAF.  I have been through a lot of bad experience where the School and  Principal who refusing to get an Quifily Interpreter who are very Professional that understand the DEAF Cultures.  I totally UNDERSTAND how this lady feels.  I truly Strongly she needs to get a lot of support from the resources Ga Hearing Impaired in Ga and Deaf Community and Civil Right under the ADA Laws for the Deaf Rights and Parent Rights. Would you happen to know anything about the Georiga??  Just wondering. I found a lot of interested in your ASL Unvieristy. Woww that is AWESOME!!!  I am very involved 100 percent in the Deaf Community.  I am also a Stage Manager with the Miss Ga Deaf Pageants and Program Book. I also am helping the Hearing Community to understand the Deaf Culutures and ASL Sign Languages Classes to teach hearing people to know about the Deaf Community.
They sometime use a Special Educational TEACHER who just learn how to Sign some but NOT very much influence in ASL Signer. So the Principal is using a TEACHER which I do not recommend inside the school only if they have any learning disable children or student in School for any reason. NOT for the  DEAF Parents requested to get a Professional Interpreter outside the school period!!  The Professional Intrepreter keep in private and they do now share with the school teachers or princpal that is why. I do not recommend the Speical Ed to intrepreter to the Parent if the Parents request a other Intrepreter who very influence in ASL Sign Languages.  Do you agree with me on this?? 
Which mean I do not agree any Special Education ONLY If they have Learning Disable children or Student can use the teacher to teach the classes. But my two hearing children are very SMART and NO problem with them. They both are hearing.  So.. The School does not CONSIDERED them to get a Provide an Professional Interpreters because they are not DEAF.  THE PARENTS ARE DEAF which me and my husband are deaf.  We do requested a professional Interpreter. I hate to use Special Ed in school Which they do gossip and share our conversations to the Principal and teacher inside the School. 
What would be the BEST to handle this problem.   If the Principal and Broad of Educational refusing to get a Professional Interpreter outside because they do not have any FUNDS.  How goes the School FUNDS works to pay the Interpreter even the American People pay the TAXES and the money we pay for school and taxes to pay the road and school. Should that money to pay the Interpreter. How does the School pay the Interpreter.  I am curious about that.  I want to help and reach out other Parents and other who have deaf children to  understand our DEAF rights. I have two beautiful children who are very smart and straighten A's and Honor Roll Student who are in Beta Club, FBLA, HOSA, their father who can not read or write. I can read and write but my English are poor in grammar.  That is the problem that the school do not see the Deaf Lack of Communication or Limited our communication that we understand.  >>>

What can I do to get the school to look for a full time interpreter?
Their thinking is that she only needs an interpreter for regular classes and not for connections classes: computer, health, band, art. What, does she somehow start hearing better during these classes?
This is her second year back in Pelham and still no interpreter and this is with giving them a 2 year notice that she would be transferring back to Pelham after 5 years @ Scott Elem. in

Would making an addendum to the IEP stating that the interpreter should be full time be something I could do? Don't I have the right as a parent as to the amount of time interpretive services are needed?
Please send any info to the following. Thanks in advance.
Dear advocate,
The parents can refuse to sign the IEP until sufficient and appropriate interpreting is provided.
If the school district is unwilling to resolve the issue informally, the parents can request a due process hearing.
If I were the parent I'd also contact the "Georgia Department of Labor: Rehabilitation Services" agency.  You can find information about them at: Fill out the eligibility forms and have them evaluate the deaf student for eligibility for rehabilitation services (for both current and future issues).
Also, specifically contact the following individuals:
Office of State Coordinator of Vocational Education for Students with Disabilities
Danny Fleming, Education Program Manager
Vocational Education Special Needs Unit
Georgia Department of Education
1752 Twin Towers East
Atlanta, GA 30334
(404) 656-3042
Programs for Children and Youth who are Blind or Visually Impaired, Deaf or Hard of Hearing, or Deaf-Blind
Dr. Kathy Heller, Project Director
Georgia Sensory Assistance Project
Georgia State University
Department of Educational Psychology and Special Education (EPSE)
P.O. Box 3979
Atlanta, GA 30302-3979
(404) 651-1262; (800) 597-2356 (V/TTY)
Programs for Children and Youth who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
Jennifer Whitcomb, Executive Director
Georgia Council for the Hearing Impaired, Inc.
4151 Memorial Drive, Suite 103-B
Decatur, GA 30032
(404) 292-5312; (800) 541-0710 (V/TTY)
Also, for a primer on your rights, check out:
Good luck!
Dr. Vicars

In a message dated 1/24/2005 8:00:31 AM Pacific Standard Time, writes:
How would you sign "damn".  I don't often use or see profanity, but recently in a deaf conversation this was used, or so I thought...any help would be greatly appreciated.

John Hancock
You hold a "D" hand in front of you--the index finger pointing somewhat forward and to the left and the palm pointing somewhat down (assuming you are right handed).  Then you shove the hand quickly down and to your right as if condemning someone to hell. The sign ends with you pointing mostly down and off to the right a bit.
Do that sign with an "H" and you will get the sign for "hell."  When in church I prefer to spell "h-e-l-l" but sign "damn."
Dr. Vicars
[Note: Starting next month I'll be taking orders for my new "Sex and Swear Signs" CD.  After years of being on my "to do list" it is almost complete. It is intended for counselors, interpreters, parents and others who may need to know these signs for professional reasons.

In a message dated 1/24/2005 12:51:45 PM Pacific Standard Time, hawthornefive@_____ writes:
Thanks for getting back to me. I'm a self-study student but I'm taking ASLU seriously. If I decided to write a paper on this topic for my own benefit can I get you to look at it? I wasn't sure if you would because I'm not a "for credit" student and I know your time is valuable.
I am working with my 6- and 3-year olds, teaching them some basic signs. My 6dd has some ADD tendencies and signing seems to help her remember things like scriptures better. The kinetic component is helpful for her, I think. She has such a hard time concentrating sometimes that I think learing to sign, even SEE, will help her to focus more. Do you know of any connection between ADD and signing? I mean, ADD kids benefiting from learning to sign?
1.  I'd be happy to look at your research paper when you get it done and possibly post it to my online library.
2.  Attention Deficit Disorders come in many flavors.  But obviously they are all connected to "attention."  One main component of "attention" is "variety."  If an input never varies it becomes boring.  By adding a visual input channel (signing) to a child's environment you are providing variety and therefore supporting a longer attention span.
Additionally, children's brains are predisposed to certain types of learning.  Some children learn better by listening, some by watching, and others by doing.  If your daughter is one of the ones that learn better by watching and doing then the use of sign language will certainly improve her educational performance.
3.  English is produced consecutively you say or write one word after another. 
ASL is a visual, gestural, spatial language which supports a three dimensional, concurrent (same time) production of lexicon (words/signs). 
A child who uses the grammar of English (linear/consecutive) in the production mode of ASL (visual) will tend to fossilize (form habits) that will be hard to break when later attempting to sign ASL.  For example such a child will have a high tendency to add be verbs when they are not needed.  Or they will use the sign "do" instead of simply using appropriate facial expressions and or certain head tilts/nods.
Is this a huge problem? No.  Is it something to consider? Yes. 
Dr. Vicars

In a message dated 1/25/2005 10:03:31 AM Pacific Standard Time, writes:
Dr. Vicars,
Just wondering, do you have any idea why the sign for "light" is the thumping of the chin with the "8" hand.  I have seen several websites and books and I just don't understand the connection...?
John Hancock
Think of your head as a burnt out light bulb and you are flicking it to see if it works, (heh).
From my armchair research I suspect that the version of the sign for "light" that you are referring to originated from the concept of "blowing out a candle."  There is an old sign for light that uses an index finger in front of the lips.  I remember seeing a version this sign used quite a bit at the Indianapolis Deaf Club in 1985.  The handshape was a "D" or "index finger."  The movement started a bit below and under the chin and moved up and out twice in an oval. 
Dr. Vicars

In a message dated 1/25/2005 10:03:33 AM Pacific Standard Time, jdowling@___ writes:
Hi Bill,

Love your work! Hope you don't mind a question. I want to sing and sign Harriet Tubman. It has metaphors in it, such as "underground railroad" and "lifeline". If you're interested, the lyrics are here.:  Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Oh golly I'd love to work on that project.
But I don't have the time. I'm just swamped though with other projects.
Maybe you could hire a professional interpreter and pay them $20 to $40 an hour to show you how they'd sign it.  Ask them for permission to videotape it so you can practice later.
Dr. Bill

In a message dated 1/28/2005 1:11:36 PM Pacific Standard Time, lizziegreen53@ writes:
Hi Bill,
How have you been?  Are you still teaching in Utah?  I've been meaning to catch up with you, but I've been planning a wedding!  I'm getting married in June. 
I'm working with the Deaf Co-op here in Beaumont.  Instead of student teaching, I interned and have been working since August and graduated in December.  I'm a itinerant teacher and work with hard-of-hearing students.  This has made me think about you a lot and what it must have been like to grow up in the public school system without sign language.  I have two or three students who are struggling and I don't know what to do (and of course Lamar doesn't prepare you to work with hard-of-hearing students).  These two or three are not bad students, but they have behavior issues.  The teachers and parents think that they have ADHD, but I think that their behavior is due to the hearing loss (I remember reading that story about the hard-of-hearing man named Randy in one of my classes).  I've also learned that people are very touchy about the term Learning Disabled and deaf students.  They basically don't do it in my Co-op (they say that lawyers told them not to).  Because I'm an Itinerant teacher, I don't have any support out on the job and am struggling to help these students.  I want to help them succeed and don't know what to do. 
What was it like growing up hard-of-hearing?  Did people think that you were a behavior problem? Some of my kids have severe hearing losses, but they are in a mainstream setting and use speech as their primary mode.  A lot of them have reading comprehension difficulties and even though I talk loud and use the auditory trainer, I feel that they are not hearing everything that I'm saying.  My program is TC and these kids don't know sign language and I only work with them once or twice a week for 45 minutes. 
A little voice in my head has been telling me to email and ask your advice, so I'm finally taking it,



Hi!  Good to hear from you.  I'm at Sac State (CSUS) now.  Congrats on your upcoming wedding!

While growing up I "don't think" I was considered a behavior problem. However they were concerned that I might be mentally slow.  Later on, I got hearing aids and could understand what the teacher was saying.  My grades shot up and they invited me to attend the gifted and talented class.

My first day in the "gifted" class I was sitting near the back with a friend.  The teacher said something and I missed a few words. So I asked my friend what the teacher had said.

The teacher bawled me out for talking in class.  She was not interested in my explanation or my side of the story.

That turned me off.  After school that night I informed my parents that I would not be attending the "gifted" program.  I had been honest to goodness looking forward to really excelling in that program and spreading my winds and learning exciting new things.  It was my desire to "not miss anything" that precipitated my talking in class.

Being bawled out for it left a rock in my stomach.

So, I know what it is like to be the "hard of hearing" kid in the class.

You indicate that you are struggling to help certain hard of hearing kids and that you want them to succeed.  A person could write a book on that topic, and indeed a couple of people have.  I did a search for this on Google.  I used the phrase "educating hard of hearing children" and got about 20 hits.

One of the hits included information about this text:


Title: Special Education in Transition (No 2, Educating Hard of Hearing Children)

by Mark and Nober, Linda W. Ross

ISBN: 0865861218

Publisher: Council Exceptional Children

Pub. Date: December, 1981


I've haven't read it, so I can't recommend it, but you might want to see if you can get your hands on a copy and check it out for yourself. Another resource could be the "Self Help for the Hard of Hearing Organization, (SHHH).  They have a plethora of information online.

I was pretty much an "autodidact" (self-learner).

Two things that worked for me as a kid:  Comic books and chess.  (I taught myself to play chess in sixth grade because my dad kept beating me at checkers and I wanted to try a different game on him. It worked.)

The comics taught me to read.  The chess taught me how to think.

For my wife it was scrabble.

Both of us were blessed with mothers who spent time teaching us about words.

Take care. 




In a message dated 1/15/2005 3:01:22 PM Pacific Standard Time, daweb@ writes:

I live in Mid Michigan's lower peninsula and teach at a college in the woods:

Our school is small compared to even other community colleges, but I like it that way. I have set my limit to 12 students and that is what I will have this coming Tues. (unless I scare some away. Why they seem to think ASL is such an easy class I'll never know. Students have told me that the out of class work load is equal to if not more than most other classes on campus. I just tell them I want to be sure they get more "bang for the buck". smile

I appreciate your offer to share and ditto for me. I thought I would be getting more from the ASLTA group but our own state only meets one to two times a year and for some reason choose topics that I already know. (I did say KNOW and not "mastered since I'm a firm believer in life long learning.) I still go to all of them and my own professional interpreting workshops as well (NAD IV) so I DO pay attention and get what I can from them.

What is your favorite Deaf culture book to recommend to students? I have so many (thanks to a generous budget) but there must be ONE that has little of everything. With my 40 years of marriage (my ticket to the Deaf community) I share many personal experiences more time consuming addition to my class time.

Better get back to polishing my syllabus... AND trying to keep warm (18 degrees outside and going down.... hubby is off into the UP snowmobiling so if I want a fire in the grate, I'll have to remember my Indian skills.

Signingly yours, Brenda

My favorite is the latest edition of, "For Hearing People Only."  Sure, there are quite a few more "scholarly" Deaf Culture books, but for the typical student who needs an introduction to the Deaf World --FHPO works really well.


In a message dated 1/17/2005 8:07:13 AM Pacific Standard Time, writes:
OH  My Goodness!
Where have you been?  Just the report confirmed some things for me.. I have visited your website and the way you instruct definitely makesthingss much clearer.  Thanks so much!
My issues....
I have found that I love ASL and see the nmeed for it to be taught to hearing individuals. i am an "assistant" in a Deaf Ministry and teach classes there.  I started using "Siging naturally" because the ITP in this area uses that and after being hihghly recommmended bythe Deaf professionals (pastors, Officials) we decided to use it.  Prior to this we didn't find a text that suited our needs.  I did not know about you site at the time. 
I am a teacher in  a public highschool and have askedto teach ASL for beginnners.  They are looking into it. 
I have found that after being told from the state I haveto get thrity credits for certification in a contaent area to conmtinue teaching in the highschool level, that what I really want to do is teach ASL! 
I have also known that an ITP prorgram is not the way for me. IMy certification is also in Deaf Education and Speech pathology.  I have taken Sign language courses in college and from private organizations over the last six to ten years.  (More clases from private organizations than in a college setting). 
i have looked at the requirements from ASLTA for certification......I am willing to do that but also know it takes years to get teh professional cert.  i will be starting school for an MA in Supervision ans Admin. (reason no County program for me it would be like backstepping) I went to a workshop that explained the process, taped us, etc....I was excited!!!
My only fear....i am hearing and will never be able to give the full scope of ASL..  I think I would not be priviy to some ofhte signes used by the deaf community no matteer how many courses I took.  i have decided to hire a tutor who is deaf and teaches in the ITP program and use your website as well.  i am in contact eith the deaf community and attend many Deaf Events.
I too am a director for a Sign Ministry which travels in NJ and the surroundinfg states.  We travel and minister in Deaf and Hearing Churches (there are different struggles and issues that occur from that too).  For the most part...I love IT.  i have been asking for direction, advice etc from someone and i feel that Lord has lead me to you!
The classes I teach for the church are free.  I have two deaf assistants and one hearing...why?  The two that are deaf really have no teaching skills and have difficulty with consistency  but love to teach, want to teach....(life issues are the hinderance, they are not lazy)
the hearing assistant wants to begin teaching....
I am a member of ASLTA, attend workshops when they are given, am immmersed in the deaf community and love to teach ....but most of the deaf i  fellowship with use PSE or English Sign.  So everythiong is basically english word order. 
So my questions are-  Will (By the way- i was the only hearing person at the workshop for ASLTA certification, I started asking myself the question was I really qualified to teach a language that isn't mine?  I feel like it is but i am always reminded it isn't....should I go ahead and teach more courses to get the hours for certification..(I 've been teaching for two years already) (ASL).   And if i do, should i scrap the "Signing naturally" text and use the format you do....just purusing your website made me see how it would benefit my students was so clear and use of the language itself is the emphasis.  To date, my students in their presentation went back to using english word order even words like "to" "is"  althought they were never  taught in my class.  So making the transition is easier done the way you do it....the students want to learn about hte deaf and commmunicate with them..niot become interps although few have mentioned going that route....We would like to start a Religious (Christian) Interp program, one recognized by the state and other schools.. Religious interps get a bad rap from other interps... we would like to change that...So exposure to the deaf culture, signing etc is the start.
Any advice would truly help.  thanks!
Rene Brown
You asked two questions: 
1.  You ask:  "Should I go ahead and teach more courses to get the hours for certification?"
Response:  Yes.   You love doing this. It excites you.  You simply feel torn because you feel that it is "not your language."
Allow me to share with you this little bit of knowledge:  Less than four percent (4%) of deaf adults have two deaf parents.  The vast majority of deaf people (92%) were born to two hearing parents.
My point is that of the total number of ASL signers, only a very, very small percentage have been using ASL since birth. The rest of us "learned it later."  I started learning ASL as a teenager. 
2.  You ask:  "Should I scrap the "Signing naturally" text and use the format you do?"
Response: You should use a format that works for you individually in your situation.  My format (the ASL University Curriculum) works incredibly well for me in my situation.  My office is 20 steps from my classroom.  I have a high speed wireless internet connection, a laptop, and an LCD projector.  I have specialized software for creating graphics and presentation slides including Microsoft PowerPoint, PaintShop Pro, and Macromedia Studio.  In addition to being somewhat knowledgeable regarding technology I also have access to talented, helpful tech support personnel. My students, without exception, are familiar with and have access to computers, internet connections, and email.
Why do I point all this out?  I do so to bring up the fact that what works for me may or not work for you depending on what resources you have.  I have to adjust my teaching style radically when I teach "community education" ASL classes instead of college ASL classes.
A while back I started writing an ASL curriculum for high school students. After much deliberation I realized the things a 15 year old wants to say to another 15 year old are foreign to me. I needed an "expert consultant." So I hired my 15 year old son and a panel of his friends to develop the content.  (In progress).
So, back to your question. The curriculum you should use depends on about 20 factors.
Most of the time the "right" curriculum is a hybrid of various systems, books, and resources.
But in any case, you are certainly welcome to use the ASLU curriculum with your students.
The lessons are posted online and will stay there for the foreseeable future.
Dr. Bill

In a message dated 1/13/2005 8:28:56 AM Pacific Standard Time, writes:
I originally learned and used the sign for "mean" the same way as you show it on your site. Around here, I've seen people use a sign for "mean" where they use their dominant hand and use it to draw a "slash" across their heart starting at their left shoulder.
Is this a common sign variation, does it have a different connotation, or what is the deal with this sign? Is this one of those "signs specific to an area" things?
That must be a regional variation.
That sign isn't in any of the larger, more popular ASL texts. Nor have I seen my wife, my friends (Utah, Texas, Washington D.C., California, Oregon), or my deaf coworkers (Northern California) using that sign.
What part of the country are you writing from?
In a message dated 1/17/2005 4:58:56 PM Pacific Standard Time, writes:
My friend is from Indianapolis.
It's funny..I haven't seen her face to face for about a year, and right after I sent the email to you, I got a call from her that she and another deaf friend were coming to my town.
Ironically, the conversation came up between the two of them about that very sign. When Carla signed "mean" with the variation I mentioned to you, her friend Richard stopped her and signed, "What in the world is THAT?" (He signs it the way you do). Her way of doing it is right hand, palm up, starting at the left shoulder and crossing down to about mid abdomen. Evidently the connotation is making an "x" over the heart, like the person has no heart. Must be an Indianapolis thing. Wonder if any other parts of the country have seen that variation.
There were several times in the conversation where that was pretty funny. Another variation was the sign for "cake". He signed it by holding his left hand palm up in front of him. The right hand cupped the part of the hand closest to the wrist in a "c" hand, and he slid the c hand up to the top near the fingers. He explained it was like going across a pan of cake slicing it. Carla signs it by holding her left hand the same way, but the right hand acts as though it is "picking up" the piece of cake out of the pan.
I also intended to send you an email telling you how much I have appreciated all the work you have done on your site. Two years ago when I met Carla, we could only "talk" via paper and pen or through email. This weekend, we all talked for 3 hours, and I didn't need the paper and pen at all...I was able to keep up on the conversation 98% of the time. Life hasn't allowed me the luxury of the ability to take ASL classes, so I have really have utilized your site. Several deaf people have asked me for the site name where I've learned, and they say they understand me very well (even though I know I'm far from "there"), so hopefully they also will pass on the word and their friends and families can learn as well!
Heh, and I sign CAKE like Carla, except I do it with the base hand palm down.


 An ASL Teacher]:  Hi Bill,  I have a question:  the sign for China starts on the non-dominant side and goes to the dominant side.  Do all other body-crossing signs do the same?  WE/US  OUR  STAFF  BOARD-OF-DIRECTORS,   CONGRESS  LEGISLATURE, etc?

I need linguistic help, thanks.

BillVicars :  No...the signs for MEMBER and CONGRESS are flexible

An ASL Teacher ]:  Ok. Thank you.!  How about the pronouns?

BillVicars :  The pronouns are generally done starting on dominant side, (less flexible)

BillVicars :  I would "correct" my students if I saw them starting  the pronouns on the non-dominant side first

BillVicars :  Does that seem to be what you see in the community?

An ASL Teacher ]:  Ok this helps A lot.  Thank you very much.  Talk to you next time I have a burning question.  No, I see dominant to non-dominant, but I wanted to check with a trained professional.  (you) smile.   

                    ______ signing off  (a pun!)   ga to sk

BillVicars :  Wait...look carefully at what I typed...we are in agreement.

BillVicars :  I said I'd correct my students if I saw them doing “pronouns” non-dominant to dominant. Which means I feel the correct method is dominant to non-dominant for pronouns.

BillVicars :  But signs like congress flower restaurant honeymoon navy twins parents and so forth can be either.

An ASL Teacher ]:  Great.  ok.  Don't want to teach wrong directions of signs.  Kiss your kids for me, even tho they don't know me.  Thanks again.  ga to sk

BillVicars :  take care

BillVicars :  sk

An ASL Teacher ]:  you too.  bye


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