American Sign Language for Kids? Did you know that American Sign Language is the 3rd most common language in American? It’s also a language used by many deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. That’s why it’s so important to learn basic signs with American sign language for kids!
American Sign Language is a form of language that involves using hands to portray words and phrases. While commonly used as a method of speaking for the hearing impaired, more people choose to learn and understand this language to easily communicate with others without using their voice.
American Sign Language for Kids
In this blog post, we’ll cover some of the basics of American Sign Language to help get you started. We’ll go over how ASL works, different types of communication methods, and more!
What is American Sign Language (ASL)?
American Sign Language, also known as ASL, is a complete language used by millions of people worldwide. It’s believed that this language was first developed in the early 1800s at the American School for the Deaf. The goal was to make it possible for the deaf to communicate with others effectively.
Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet was the original creator of ASL. His goal was to help his neighbor communicate with their daughter, who was deaf. The language has since evolved and is continuously used to allow people to connect and communicate with ease.
Who uses ASL and why do they use it, and what does the sign for “I love you” look like in ASL?
Many people use ASL as a way to communicate with one another. It’s most common for deaf individuals to use ASL to talk to people and understand what they’re saying back to them.
While the deaf community commonly uses this form of language, they’re not the only ones. Some hard-of-hearing people prefer to use ASL because it’s easier for them than constantly asking someone to repeat themselves multiple times to hear what they’re saying.
Although it’s the primary language of the deaf, millions of other people use ASL. They may choose to learn it to allow them to communicate with those who aren’t capable of hearing nearly as well. It’s always suitable for people of all ages to learn sign language because it can make a difference in their lives.
When saying “I love you,” you’d need to keep your pointer finger up with your thumb and pinky while leaving the ring finger and middle finger down. You can hold the hand still or move it around to express love to someone else.
Why should kids learn ASL as a second language if their first language is English (or another spoken language)?
Children should learn ASL as a second language for a few good reasons. These are some of the benefits of teaching children ASL while they’re still young:
- They can communicate in different ways. Some children struggle with speech and experience speech delays. In this case, knowing sign language allows them to communicate better with their parents, thus resulting in fewer tantrums and outbursts.
- It improves cognitive abilities. When children learn sign language, it can enhance their cognitive skills, allowing them to get more in-tune with their creative side.
- It teaches better listening skills. Children who learn sign language when they’re young are often better listeners. They’re also more likely to achieve in academics when they’re attending school.
- Children can communicate with deaf students or students with other hearing impairments. If a child learns sign language at an earlier age, they’ll have no trouble communicating with other students with hearing impairments.
American Sign Language is beneficial for children of all ages to learn, but it’s even better when introduced to kids at a younger age. It teaches them that there are different ways to communicate with others. It also makes children more aware that not everyone’s the same, and some people have disabilities that make it hard or impossible for them to hear sounds.
How can parents help their children learn to sign at home with simple signs for things like “please,” “thank you,” “yes,” and so on?
Parents can help their children learn how to sign at home by starting with simple signs for common words that children need to know, including please, thank you, yes, and no.
When teaching a child how to sign words like please, leave the thumb standing straight up, place the hand over the chest, and move it in a clockwise motion up to three times. Parents can say the word before showing their child how to hold their hand, place it in the correct spot, and move it properly to signify the word.
Place the dominant hand flat on the lips and chin before you move it forward to say thank you in ASL. It’s an easy phrase that children should know.
Ball the hand into a fist, hold it up, and shake it back and forth a few times to say yes in ASL. It’s, by far, one of the easiest words to know in sign language.
Parents can start with these simple words and phrases and then work their way up to more advanced phrases and sentences as their children begin to get the hang of doing sign language.
How can schools incorporate learning about ASL into the curriculum for elementary school students?
Schools can offer ASL classes to students, much like they’d offer a second language class, such as Spanish or French. During class, students can complete worksheets, learn to present in front of their peers, and study workbooks consisting of detailed information on the ASL language. Practice makes perfect when it comes to this language.
What are some resources that parents or teachers could use to teach kids about ASL, including online videos, books, apps, etc.?
Parents and teachers should take advantage of the many resources available to help children understand ASL and learn how to use it. More resources are available than ever before, including convenient videos, books, and apps for children to use. Some of the best resources include:
- ASL with Care Bears (App)
- Signed Stories (App)
- Marlee Signs (App)
- Sign Language Basics (YouTube Video)
- ASL Colors – Signing for Kids (YouTube Video)
- MyGo! Sign Language for Kids (YoutTube Video)
- My First Book of Sign Language (Book)
- Sign Language for Kids: A Fun and Easy Guide to American Sign Language (Book)
Parents and teachers can also print engaging worksheets that provide valuable lessons on ASL while keeping children occupied and entertained.
All children should learn American Sign Language. It’s best to start teaching children this language when they’re still young because of the advantage it offers at such an early age. However, it’s never too late for someone to learn ASL.
How to get started with sign language
To learn how American Sign Language works, start out with ASL’s alphabet system which includes 26 letters that correspond to a specific letter just like in English or Spanish.
To help get you started, I have a free printable for you – the American Sign Language Alphabet.