All Blog Articles

How long until I am a fluent signer?

How long until I am a fluent signer?

By John Miller  |  Friday, April 30, 2010

Many people often ask me this question. That is really a hard one to answer because everyone's rate of learning a new language varies greatly. The motivation behind the learning is going to be a key factor as well as the opportunity to actually practice what you are learning with multiple signers. It is important to practice signing with, and reading from, many signers as you learn so you don't just get used to the way one particular person ...
Take Them Shopping!

Take Them Shopping!

By John Miller  |  Thursday, April 15, 2010

Earlier, I discussed how I used cooking as a classroom activity to engage my students in sign language education. Well if you cook, you have to shop! Each week the students and I would pour over cookbooks picking out a recipe that might go along with a particular theme that we were studying at that time, such as traditional Thanksgiving foods in November, Valentine's cookies in February, etc... Sometimes it might just be something that sounded tasty. From that ...
Take Signing Savvy On The Road

Take Signing Savvy On The Road

By Jillian Winn  |  Monday, March 29, 2010

One of the most requested features we have had to date is the ability to access the Signing Savvy website on mobile devices. First and foremost among the requests have been for the ability to access the site on the iPhone, which to date does not support the Flash-based video we have on the standard website. Signing Savvy Now Available for iPhone and iPod Touch We are happy to announce that we now have a beta version of the Signing Savvy ...
Tips for Reading Fingerspelling

Tips for Reading Fingerspelling

By John Miller  |  Saturday, March 13, 2010

Many people talk to me about their frustrations with fingerspelling and want suggestions on how to improve their receptive skills when it comes to reading fingerspelling. My suggestions tend to follow a lot of the same rules that apply to teaching a child to read: Practice, practice, pratice...the more you work on reading other people's fingerspelling, the better you will get. Everyone's fingers are different so it is important to practice with many different partners in order to experience all the ...
Children love to cook!

Children love to cook!

By John Miller  |  Sunday, March 7, 2010

They just do! I often used cooking as a teaching tool the classroom. Once my students got the skills in place through our dramatic play (described earlier), we would do cooking activities in the classroom and invite others in to join us and taste our creations. While cooking, we would again use our digital camera to document the steps in the process. We would print off these photos later and have the students put them in order (sequencing) and add ...
Using Figurative Language with Sign

Using Figurative Language with Sign

By John Miller  |  Thursday, February 25, 2010

Many people have asked how to sign things that say one thing but mean something else. This happens a lot in the English Language! Some Examples: It's raining cats and dogs!, or You look really sharp today. Now as native users of the English language, we know that neither cats or dogs are falling from the skies .nor is the person in the second sentence looking rather pointed. These are concepts that people who are learning English as a ...
What Happened in School Today?

What Happened in School Today?

By John Miller  |  Sunday, January 24, 2010

How frustrating it must be as a parent to have your deaf child come home and have no idea what has just happened to them for the last seven hours. The child may do their best to communicate their day but many of them have JUST learned the vocabulary themselves and reproducing them once they get home for mom and dad is difficult to say the least. One idea that I used that was very successful was a daily journal ...
Dramatic Play

Dramatic Play

By John Miller  |  Sunday, January 17, 2010

Dramatic play is such an underrated way for children to learn. I had so much fun interacting with my preschool deaf children and watching how they would communicate through dramatic play. It opened the doors for so many teaching/learning opportunities. One of my favorites was making restaurant menus including all the plastic play food we had in our dramatic play kitchens and creating our own cafe. The pages would include a digital photo of the food along ...
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

By Jillian Winn  |  Thursday, December 24, 2009

From all of us at Signing Savvy, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! While we worked for several years developing the site before it went live; the beginning of 2010 marks the end of our first year of being live on the Internet and we are very grateful for the support of all of our users. We particularly are thankful for full members who allow us to continue to grow the site. In 2010, we ...
Signs, Signs, EVERYWHERE!

Signs, Signs, EVERYWHERE!

By John Miller  |  Friday, December 11, 2009

In many preschool or early childhood classes you walk into the room and you see the written words for different objects around the room everywhere. A chair has the word CHAIR on it, the cupboards are marked with the words PUZZLES, GAMES, PAINT etc... to indicate their contents, all in an effort to teach the children the written words for the different objects from their environment that they interact with everyday. To teach signs, do the same thing! You ...