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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 - MOON

Savvy Tutoring and Savvy Chats: So Much to Sign About, So Much to Learn

Site News   |  Friday, June 29, 2018

By Jillian Winn

We first started our Savvy Chat service over a year ago and have since added Savvy Tutoring. These ASL sessions let you meet online, one-on-one with one of our signing experts, Marta Belsky, through video chat. In that time, Marta has had the pleasure of meeting with people from around the country to chat and practice ASL skills, as well as for tutoring on vocabulary development, receptive and expressive fingerspelling skills, and more. 


one-on-one

30 minutes

online

Each session is unique to meet the needs of the person who scheduled the chat. Future chats with the same person are often very different depending on the person’s changing goals and objectives. 

Marta
ASL One-on-One Session with Marta

Marta is a third generation ASL user and has been teaching ASL for 30 years. She has Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Gallaudet University and a Masters in Deaf Education from Western Maryland College. She has taught ASL at Michigan State University, Madonna University, and in Lansing Community College's Interpreter Training Program. She enjoys sharing her native language with new users. It is important to her that people learn the language the "right" way and learn about Deaf Culture at the same time. Marta has worked with people who have never signed before as well as experienced signers. When you meet with Marta, she assesses your current ASL fluency and then tailors the conversation or lesson in a way that will fit with your current ASL knowledge and also your goals for the session.

Savvy Tutoring

Some people have scheduled Savvy Tutoring with Marta to focus on a specific skill, like preparing for an upcoming test, practicing mouth morphemes and classifiers, and working on using ASL grammar instead of English sentence structure. Others who have had previous ASL knowledge wanted to work with Marta to assess their current fluency and receive suggestions for areas to work on for further improvement. Occasionally people have had a very specific topic they wanted to learn more about, like Deaf culture or a specific message they wanted to learn to sign to someone they care for.

Savvy Chat

Some people have lacked local resources where they can meet and sign with others, so they use Savvy Chat to practice conversational ASL.

Sometimes a single ASL One-on-One Session has turned into reoccurring sessions where either they simply practice signing through conversation or goals are formed to help the person build specific ASL skills. Regardless of previous ASL skill level, Marta works with you to meet your ever-changing goals. 

Here is some feedback from people who have had ASL One-on-One Sessions with Marta: 

"Marta was so friendly and easy to talk with! She helped me so much, and was very patient when I had trouble with receptive finger spelling! I was so happy to be able to practice with her and look forward to doing it again!”

“Marta was very helpful with giving me feedback and correction, as needed. I really enjoyed both sessions with her, last week and today, and after working with her felt more confident with my signing.”

“I feel like I'm really making some progress. Marta is amazing. She keeps the conversation rolling. We have a lot of similar likes and dislikes. Looking forward to another session!”

“Thank you Marta! I feel like I'm gaining confidence and really enjoy our sessions. So much to sign about! Thank you for your patience. You're truly a gifted teacher.”

“So grateful for the time to chat with Marta! I felt so comfortable from the very start!”

“Marta was fun to chat with. She was very helpful and kind. I learned a lot in my short 30 minutes. The time flew by!”

“Thank you for your help, Marta! I enjoyed speaking with you! Thanks for being patient with me and helping me with fingerspelling. You taught me some fun things. Now I know how to sign "cruise"! I'm looking forward to chatting again sometime.”

If you want to practice your signing or want help to learn and study ASL, check out our ASL One-on-One Sessions, including Savvy Tutoring and Savvy Chat.

 

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Interpreter Q & A: Should interpreters share stories about their day (and their clients)?

Interpreter Q & A: Should interpreters share stories about their day (and their clients)?

Interpreter Tips   |  Friday, June 8, 2018

By Brenda Cartwright

This article is by Brenda Cartwright. Brenda is a seasoned interpreter, a master teacher, and well known presenter. Brenda is the "Dear Abby" for the interpreting world - 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.

This article is part of our "Dear BC, Interpreter Q & A” series, which answers questions on interpreting and Deaf culture from multiple perspectives. This article was also published in the Spring 2018 (Issue 35 Volume 2) Edition of VIEWS Magazine from RID. VIEWS is a digital publication distributed quarterly by the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and dedicated to the interpreting profession. The magazine includes RID member spotlights, announcements from the RID board, and engaging stories about issues impacting the interpreting community. See this article (on page 14) and more in the Spring 2018 Edition of VIEWS Magazine from RID.

Dear BC,

My neighbor is an interpreter and she was telling me about all the gory things she has to face on a daily basis as an interpreter: feces, fungus, blood, naked bodies, nasty smells, foul language etc... No names of clients were disclosed but I couldn’t help but wonder how Deaf people would feel if they knew that she was talking and laughing about them. I remember when I was in the hospital, I was so sick I puked. I’m sure my poop stunk. I’m sure I looked like crap. I hope my nurses didn’t talk about me. I think the same should apply to interpreters. What is your opinion about this?

Sincerely,
Uneasy Neighbor

The video features a full interpretation of what is discussed in this article.

An Experienced Interpreter's Perspective:

It certainly sounds like this interpreter enjoys telling these stories because of their sensationalism and for her own "visceral kicks." If I heard an interpreter telling stories about Deaf clients in their most vulnerable moments, I would ask her straight out "Where’s your compassion?! Where’s your discretion?!" Interpreting is a job. We are there to work, not to collect stories to impress our friends.

An Experienced Deaf Consumer's Perspective:

This interpreter showed a complete lack of respect for her clients. We are vulnerable and dependent on interpreters during some of the most scary and embarrassing moments of our lives. What was this interpreter’s intention? Yes, there are indeed unsavory and upsetting aspects of the job. But, telling stories and laughing about us is oppressive.

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

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