Wednesday, May 21, 2008

First Steps on the Road to ASL Fluency

As I have said before, we started out using Signing Exact English, with a Total Communication methodology (TC/SEE) when our daughter first became deaf. She got a cochlear implant just after her first birthday. She went to a TC/SEE private school through first grade, and then was mainstreamed with a SEE interpreter for two years. She doesn't have an interpreter this year.

Our goal for her was that she be able to communicate with as many people as possible, and to keep as many doors open for her as we could. We have always intended for her to learn ASL, and this summer she will begin to learn ASL. We have talked to a private ASL teacher (she is Deaf), and she will begin meeting with our daughter once a week. The teacher is also helping to introduce her to various ASL social get-togethers. We have also signed her up for a Deaf summer camp. Hopefully, between the ASL community events, summer camp and the weekly instructions, she will have a good introduction to ASL.

I will keep you updated as to her progress. Maybe by the fall she can do a vlog on her progress.


starrynight said...


That sounds like a good plan. Your daughter will probably have an easier time learning ASL because she already knows some sign language including SEE/PSE like I did myself. I used SEE/PSE while growing up until I entered college and picked up ASL naturally in the Deaf community.

My child loves using ASL and is highly motivated in working with an ASL deaf teacher. ASL does not interfere my child's spoken language development with a CI but seems to help her progress more quickly in spoken language. ASL is a beautiful visual language and would be beneficial for all deaf children with or without CIs.

Good luck and keep us posted!

Kim said...

I might be wrong about this but I think deaf people are naturally visual and tend to pick up siging more quickly than oral people. I do not mean to brag but one only needs to show me a sign a couple times before I remember it. Often I remember the very FIRST time I see it. Sign Language is so logical to me. That said, ASL is complicated because of the sentence structure. I still think in English. Your daughter, being younger, will easily and quickly make the switch.