An ASL Dictionary

Signing Savvy is a sign language dictionary containing several thousand high resolution videos of American Sign Language (ASL) signs, fingerspelled words, and other common signs used within the United States and Canada.

And Much More!

Signing Savvy is an ideal resource to use while you learn sign language. It includes the ability to view large sign videos, build your own word lists and share them with others, create virtual flash cards and quizzes, print signs, build sign phrases, ...and more

Sign of the Day - COOK
(as in verb, to cook)

All Articles

Signing Children’s Books: The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and THE BIG HUNGRY BEAR

Learning Tips   |  Thursday, February 7, 2019

By John Miller

This article is part of our “Signing Children’s Books” series, which highlights children’s books and pairs them with pre-built Signing Savvy word lists to help you get started with learning and signing the vocabulary in the book. Reading and literacy is so important. By sharing these pre-built word lists, we hope to cut down on prep time for families that are just beginning to learn ASL and hope you can find more comfort in sharing literacy with our young deaf children.

The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and THE BIG HUNGRY BEAR is another really cute book by Don and Audrey Wood that has become a classic in children's literature. Its amazing illustrations, coupled with its simple vocabulary, and the fun concept of a cute little mouse thinking of ways to hide this big beautiful strawberry from a big hungry bear, makes it irresistible for young readers.

Extension Activities

Concepts that can be expanded and covered from this book range from math and science to language and cooking.

  • Math: Talk about math concepts by discussing how to cut the strawberry in half, thirds, quarters etc. (or create an activity using paper or real strawberries and let the kids divide them).
  • Language: Talk about ways to disguise something.
  • Science: Discussions and activities involving the senses (look, hear, smell, taste, touch). For example, discuss how the bear could smell the strawberry hidden in the woods.
  • Cooking: There are many different tasty recipes involving strawberries on Pinterest. I choose to make chocolate brownies with chocolate covered strawberries as my baking activity and the children loved them. They also liked the activity of cutting the strawberries in half using butter knives and drizzling the melted chocolate over the top of the strawberries and brownies! It's a simple yet delicious way to celebrate the book!

If you are looking for ideas for more extension ideas, check out the Scholastic book guide for the book. There are also a lot of ideas that go with the book on Pinterest. Check them out and have fun!

Get the Pre-Built Word List for this Book!

I hope through The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and THE BIG HUNGRY BEAR word list you will feel confident to share this story with your children. You can also bring up signs on the Signing Savvy Member App using the pre-built word list as you go through the book. 

Word List for The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and THE BIG HUNGRY BEAR

View word list of ASL signs for the book The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry and THE BIG HUNGRY BEAR

Signing Savvy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking signingsavvy.com to Amazon properties. That means Signing Savvy may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on an affiliate link, your cost will be exactly the same regardless, but Signing Savvy will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us continue to improve Signing Savvy!

 

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Interpreter Q & A: Will Technology and Cochlear Implants Make Interpreters Become Obsolete

Interpreter Q & A: Will Technology and Cochlear Implants Make Interpreters Become Obsolete

Interpreter Tips   |  Sunday, February 3, 2019

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the author of the Dear Reality column in the VIEWS publication from Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and the book Encounters With Reality: 1001 Interpreter Scenarios. She will be contributing blog articles for Signing Savvy on interpreting, Deaf culture, and answering a series of "Dear BC" interpreter questions.

Dear BC,

I am currently in an interpreter training program, but I’m starting to have doubts about the viability of my choice of careers. My concern is twofold. I’ve heard several experts say that interpreters will one day be replaced by technology! I also am aware that cochlear implants are a big deal for parents with young deaf children, so I’m wondering if maybe interpreters will become obsolete. What do you think?

Sincerely,
Having Second Thoughts

An Experienced Interpreter's Perspective:

I too have concerns about all the technological advances we see continuing to creep into our lives. It seems like I’m always reading or hearing about new gizmos and inventions that sound pretty unbelievable and the unknown can seem scary and daunting. In fact, I just read an article about children and adults who received cochlear implants and interpreters are still very much in demand to augment what they still can’t hear or when they are in group settings.

Admittedly, technology usually intimidates me, but technology is only as good as those who are trained to use it. While these advances may invariably lighten our burdens, my sense is that Deaf people are still going to want a real live person rendering the message to them. The subtleties of facial expressions, non-manual markers and the brain’s ability to sift through the morass of our language to come up with the kernel, the concept, the essence of what a speaker is saying just can’t be done by a computer.

I may sound naïve here because I know that technological improvements and discoveries are going to happen despite any protests or fear. I’d like to think, though, that these new innovations will ultimately be positive in ameliorating situations for deaf and hard of hearing people. We are human, after all, and communication replicated artificially is prone to misunderstandings. It cannot compare to the connection or the very human bond that is possible in person with a real live person. Perhaps we need to reframe our apprehensions and instead look at technology as something that will hopefully make our jobs easier, better, more efficient and complement our craft.

Experienced Deaf Consumer's Perspective:

After reading your letter, I understand how you might be concerned about the viability of your future career choice. However, speaking as a Certified Deaf Interpreter, I feel more than ever that we (the Deaf community) will need ASL interpreters in schools, jobs, and theaters, various performances, judicial settings, medical visits, etc. for many more years to come. As to your concerns about the prominence of technology eradicating the need for interpreters, you need to realize that not all Deaf children will benefit from these advances. For example, children with profound or severe hearing losses will receive little to no advantage if they undergo cochlear implant surgery. Years ago, I considered getting a cochlear implant but my doctor advised against it because of the severe nerve damage to my ear. I strongly believe that ASL interpreters will be needed for many more Deaf generations to come. I cannot and will not depend on technology to “cure” my deafness – that is impossible. Deafness is caused by a variety of factors, so finding a cure-all using technology is highly improbably. While it is true that the future is not “set in stone,” I cannot imagine a world where ASL interpreters or the profession of interpreting will become obsolete.

What's your perspective? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
 

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About the Author

Brenda CartwrightBrenda Cartwright is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, well known presenter, and author of several best selling sign language and interpreting textbooks from the RID Press. For the last 30 years Brenda has been the Chair of the Sign Language Interpreter Program at Lansing Community College in Lansing, Michigan.

More about BC  |  Articles by BC

Signing Children’s Books: Snowmen at Night

Learning Tips   |  Friday, February 1, 2019

By John Miller

This article is part of our “Signing Children’s Books” series, which highlights children’s books and pairs them with pre-built Signing Savvy word lists to help you get started with learning and signing the vocabulary in the book. Reading and literacy is so important. By sharing these pre-built word lists, we hope to cut down on prep time for families that are just beginning to learn ASL and hope you can find more comfort in sharing literacy with our young deaf children.

The Snowmen at Night is a wintery classic that explores the reason why our snowmen look different when we wake up in the morning. It is a fun fantasy of how our snowmen meet up and play while we are all fast asleep.

Watch the snowmen play with their snowman buddies and play throughout the night.

Extension Activities

There is also a sequel, Snowmen at Christmas that is equally as fun and loved by children and adults alike!

For a great recipe that goes with the theme of this book, see my article Cooking Up Language with Signs: Melting Snowman Cookies.

Get the Pre-Built Word List for this Book!

I hope through the Snowmen at Night pre-built word list you will feel confident to share this story with your children.

Word List for Snowmen at Night

View word list of ASL signs for the book Snowmen at Night

Related Books: 

Signing Savvy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking signingsavvy.com to Amazon properties. That means Signing Savvy may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on an affiliate link, your cost will be exactly the same regardless, but Signing Savvy will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us continue to improve Signing Savvy!

 

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Cooking Up Language with Signs: Melting Snowman Cookies

Learning Tips   |  Friday, February 1, 2019

By John Miller

This article is part of our “Cooking Up Language With Signs” series, which features a recipe and accompanying sign language word list to get you started on an interactive cooking activity that is great for spicing up language learning at home or in the classroom.

What’s cookin’?

Today I’m cooking up Melting Snowman Cookies. I chose this recipe as I was working on the article and word list for Signing Children’s Books: Snowmen at Night. This is a great recipe to pair with the book The Snowmen at Night. These are really easy cookies to make and are really cute. Let the kids get creative with how they decorate them and make each one look different.

You can make the cookies from scratch (any sugar cookie recipe) or you can do like I did here and buy the tube of sugar cookie dough from any grocery store and simply cut them, place them on a cookie sheet, and bake them according to the directions on the package.

Cookie dough for Melting Snowman Cookies     bake cookies

Once the cookies are out and cooled, melt your white chocolate / crème and pour that over the top of them. Put the melted crème on the cookies with uneven edges so that it looks like the snow has melted. Place a marshmallow on top of the creme' while it's still warm. Place the cookies in the refrigerator until the creme' has hardened back up.

Add creme

Once cooled, remove from the refrigerator and using small colored tubes of decorative frosting to personalize your snowmen.

Who doesn't love sugar cookies frosted with white crème and marshmallows?

Final Melting Snowman Cookies

Recipe

Enjoy making these cute Melting Snowman Cookies. Use the pre-built word list created to go along with the recipe to help you as you make this tasty recipe.

Melting Snowman Cookies

Ingredients:

Tools:

Directions:

  1. You can make the cookies from scratch (any sugar cookie recipe) or you can do like I did here and buy the tube of sugar cookie dough from any grocery store and simply cut them, place them on a cookie sheet, and bake them according to the directions on the package.

  2. Once the cookies are out and cooled, melt your white chocolatecrème and pour that over the top of them. Put the melted crème on the cookies with uneven edges so that it looks like the snow has melted.

  3. Place a marshmallow on top of the crème while it's still warm.

  4. Place the cookies in the refrigerator until the crème has hardened back up.

  5. Once cooled, remove from the refrigerator and using small, colored tubes of decorative frosting, personalize your snowmen. Give your snowmen eyes, a nose, mouth, arms, a scarf, and buttons.


Get the Pre-Built Word List for this Recipe!

I hope through the Melting Snowman Cookies word list you will feel confident to cook up some language fun with your children. You can also bring up signs on the Signing Savvy Member App using the pre-built word list as you go through the recipe.

Word List for Melting Snowman Cookies

View word list of ASL signs for Melting Snowman Cookies

Signing Savvy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking signingsavvy.com to Amazon properties. That means Signing Savvy may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on an affiliate link, your cost will be exactly the same regardless, but Signing Savvy will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us continue to improve Signing Savvy!

 

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Signing Savvy Anniversary - A Lot Can Happen in 10 Years!

Signing Savvy Anniversary - A Lot Can Happen in 10 Years!

Site News   |  Tuesday, January 29, 2019

By Jillian Winn

This month is the 10th anniversary of the public launch of Signing Savvy. In those 10 years, nearly 22 million people have used Signing Savvy.

When we set out over ten years ago to create Signing Savvy, we had a vision to create an online sign language resource for educators, parents, interpreters, students, or anyone interested in American Sign Language.

Many people are shocked when they learn that 95% of all deaf and hard of hearing children are born to hearing parents. This means a few things – almost all hard of hearing children are born into families that do not know or use sign language and their parents do not have previous experience with raising and educating a deaf child — many may not have even met a deaf person before. 

The number one concern for parents is "how do I communicate with my child?" followed by concerns with how will their child communicate with others, and what is the best way to raise and educate a deaf child. The options and information may be overwhelming for parents, but just like raising any child, each child and family is different and there isn’t a “one size fits all” plan to execute. Research shows the key is early exposure and full access to a natural language. For many families, ASL becomes an important part of their journey.

Like any language, the best way to learn is to immerse yourself with other native speakers or take a class. However, overwhelmed by the unexpected challenge of having a deaf child and, like all of us, busy with life (working, going to school, raising other children, etc.), we felt parents needed a resource they could access quickly and easily - for those rare spare minutes when they have a chance to sit down and learn signs, to being able to look up a sign when they or their child is wondering, "How do I sign…" when they are on-the-go.

Since its inception, Signing Savvy has always worked closely with schools, parents, teachers and interpreters in order to provide a quality online sign language resource. Not only did we want to be a resource for parents at home, but we wanted to bridge the gap between home and school, and make it easier for teachers to share with parents what is being taught and what signs are being used at school. We wanted to be that home / school connection piece that had been missing in Deaf Education for years. Signing Savvy and its set of features was the solution we came up with. We created word lists to be a powerful tool to allow teachers to share vocabulary with parents and other stakeholders.

Signing Savvy Features

Recently a teacher of the Deaf in Pennsylvania shared how she was using Signing Savvy with us. She said, "I really use this everyday! Love it!" and went on to explain she creates weekly vocabulary lists (Signing Savvy word lists) for her early elementary student. She introduces the next week’s words to him on Friday using Signing Savvy.  She has the student use the Signing Savvy quizzing tool to quiz himself on the iPad by hitting the next button to see if he is right.

She shares the word lists with his classroom teacher as well, who then teaches the vocabulary words to her regular education students along with the deaf student. The classroom teacher and other support staff are able to look up the words on their Apps independently. The ability to create the lists allows teachers to go in and practice on their own or move ahead to be prepared. She said, "It is a great tool and I would have to say my lessons would be much more difficult if I didn't have access to this great App!"

She also prints sign images for the words and use that to hang a sample of the signs for the kids to see. The whole class learns several signs per week. She also created a book for the teachers and staff to reference with all of the printed signs.

Additionally, they refer to the App multiple times for unknown signs or discrepancies and it helps to serve as their “go to” to answer questions. Of course, the word lists can also be shared with the student’s parents so they can learn the vocabulary along with the student.

This testimonial is so rewarding to our team at Signing Savvy, because this is just how we had hoped Signing Savvy would be used when we first created it.

Because of the recent acceptance of American Sign Language as a foreign language for hearing students, high schools and colleges have also joined the ranks of institutions that have found Signing Savvy to be a very helpful resource in their student’s educational process.

Working closely with Interpreter Training Programs and Universities in the US that teach sign language has allowed Signing Savvy to even better understand the value of having a mobile tool that can be very individualized, travel with you, and continually educate you and update you with blogs and signs of the day to assist in your sign language journey.

Benefits of Signing Savvy

In the last ten years, people have shared many additional heart-warming stories with us about how they use Signing Savvy. From the veteran who lost his hearing after service and used Signing Savvy to learn ASL… to the person that wanted to be able to ask their deaf co-worker how their weekend was… to the parents with hearing babies that wanted to sign with them before they learned to talk… to the person learning church related signs… to the teacher teaching ASL who shared Signing Savvy’s quizzing tools with her students so they could review vocabulary and be more prepared for class… to the college students who were able to do better in their ASL classes and learn ASL more easily by using Signing Savvy in conjunction with their classes... Today Signing Savvy is used, not only by parents and teachers, but by both deaf and hearing students, lifelong learners, interpreters, people losing their hearing, children with speech delays, Down syndrome, autism, and apraxia, and anyone wanting a quick ASL reference.

It has been a great 10 years of learning, sharing, and community. A lot can happen in 10 years! We have many exciting things planned moving forward. We hope you will continue on this journey with us to make sign language more accessible. To another great 10 years!

 

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