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 - BEAUTIFUL

Blog Articles by: John Miller

Setting Up People, Places and Things

Learning Tips   |  Wednesday, July 28, 2010

By John Miller

The use of space is a very important feature in American Sign Language. The way to be able to refer back to different people, places or things (referents) is to use the space around the signer. You do this by setting up the space. This is done in a three dimensional manner. It can be done in the space to the left or right of the signer, in front of the signer, in a semi-circle around the signer, or in rare cases behind the signer.

The signer establishes the person, place or thing by identifying them within the sign space, and then leaving them there (in space). The signer can then refer back to that specific space every time they are talking about that referent. Other signers in the same conversation can also refer to and use this sign space once it has been established (set up).

The setting up of the space can happen a few different ways:

  1. A person, place or thing can be fingerspelled in a certain location.
  2. You can make a sign in that location.
  3. A sign classifier can be signed in that location.
  4. The use of a directional verb can be signed toward a certain location.

One rule of thumb is to never set up more than six referents in any one conversation. Even that can be too many if there is going to be a lot of information associated with each. The proper use of space can make your signing much clearer and easily understood when done following these rules.

Happy Signing!

 

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Making signs plural or in the past tense

Learning Tips   |  Wednesday, July 14, 2010

By John Miller

We have received several emails asking how to make signed words plural or showing if something happened in the past, as well as having emphasis to show desire.

There are a few different ways to do this:

  1. One way to show an emphasis or plurals is to repeat the sign. For example, if you are wanting to say “He wants that really bad!” You would sign WANT+WANT+THAT+HE. That double use of the sign want shows that he really wants it. You would NOT sign the word bad because it has a different meaning in this sentence. The double signing of want also makes it a plural.
  2. Showing something happened in the past can be done by making a gesture of throwing it over your shoulder. This is using the sign space that refers to the past. (Use the 5-hand with the palm facing backward, moving in a backward direction).
  3. You can also sign FINISH after a sign to show that it happened in the past. For example, if you want to say "He wanted to go." You could sign GO+HE+WANT+FINISH.
  4. There is an English signing method that has you add the S or ED or ING ending to the words but this is not as widely used and is actually frowned upon by most people who use American Sign Language. The more appropriate method is to determine what is meant and translate it accordingly. For example, if you want to say "He is left wanting." You could sign HE+WANT+MORE+STILL.

Happy Signing!

 

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Fourth of July Signing Celebration!

Site News   |  Tuesday, June 15, 2010

By John Miller

Independence Day

Signing Savvy wants to help celebrate Independence Day by offering a 7/4 celebration. You get a SEVEN-day trial membership FOR-FREE!

Check out the membership features like LARGE video, ability to build your own word lists (and view other members' shared word lists), quiz yourselves, as well as the one of a kind print feature!

To access your trial, login to your account (or create a registered guest account if you do not have one) and go to the trial offer page.

Happy Fourth of the July from Signing Savvy!

 

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Social Networking with Signing Savvy

Site News   |  Tuesday, June 1, 2010

By John Miller

We recently added several links to social networking sites to both help the world learn more about Signing Savvy AND to help build a community around the users of Signing Savvy site. Currently, you can access us on:

We are using YouTube to get out video tutorials on the features of the site. If you have not watched them, I highly recommend you check them out to make sure you are taking full advantage of the features the site offers.
We are using Facebook to build a community around the site. Please friend us if you have a Facebook account.
We are using Twitter to tweat about sign language and related news. Please follow us if you have a Twitter account.
We are using Digg to help promote the site to others that may not yet know about it. Please Digg Us!
We are also using StumbleUpon to help promote the site to others that may not yet know about it. Please StumbleUpon Us.
We have had a RSS feed of our blog in place for some time. You can connect to it from your favorite RSS reader.

We have little icons at the bottom of the home page for quick access to these social networking sites.

We are still exploring how best to make use of the social networking sites, so feel free to give us your thoughts. We want to build a strong community around Signing Savvy and the signing community.

 

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How do I get my signs to flow together so that I don't look choppy when I am signing?

Learning Tips   |  Friday, April 30, 2010

By John Miller

As a beginning signer, it is just natural that you will be choppy. Once you get a larger sign vocabulary, you will not be so worried about searching for a way to say something that you know the signs for and you will be able to focus on the flow of your signs.

When you sign music it also helps with the flow if you let the music guide you. There are a few different sites on the internet for you to watch music being signed to show you what I mean. For example, check out the D-Pan. Remember as I have stated in previous blogs, when you are signing music it is glossed (changed into concepts rather than word for word). Check out some songs that are popular and see if you can catch what the people are signing and why they are signing them that way. It is actually an art form all it's own.

 

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