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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Why Should My Child Learn American Sign Language?

Top Ten List
Why Learn ASL?

1. It is a beautiful language. There is more to American Sign Language than simply memorizing signs for words. It has it's own set of grammatical rules and structures. If you've watched an interpreter at a concert or a church, remember how you were intrigued by the hand and body movements to communicate without oral language. Beautiful.

2. Language for dyslexic students. Students with dyslexia have a very difficult time learning foreign languages. American Sign language is an exception. Because dyslexics learn best through multi-sensory methods and because ASL is a multi-sensory language, it is a perfect fit.

3. Fulfills most colleges' foreign language requirement. Over 40 states have passed laws recognizing American Sign Language as a complete and natural language. Hundreds of colleges and universities throughout the United States accept ASL in fulfillment of language entrance and exit requirements. If your child is planning on attending college, check with the perspective college to make sure ASL meets their foreign language requirement.

4. Useful resource for special needs children. Parents with autistic and Down Syndrome children (in addition to a multitude of learning disabilities) report that American Sign Language is an excellent resource in increasing communication abilities. 

5. Communication with the profoundly deaf and hard of hearing. American Sign Language is the third most common foreign language in the U.S. after English. ASL gives you the ability to communicate with over 500,000 Americans. It also gives you the ability to communicate with non-English speakers.

More reasons to learn ASL after the video.


 Meet Mrs. Gingras, Homeschool Connections' ASL Instructor

6. Future career opportunities. ASL-related careers include: ASL Teacher ($33,000), Special education ($25,000 to $45,000); Audiologist ($65,000 to $80,000); Interpreter ($40,000 to $65,000).

7. It's a fun language to learn. ASL is easily one of Homeschool Connections' most popular courses. The students LOVE coming to class each week and are never late with homework. We've yet to award anything less than an A in ASL, because students love learning it that much.

8. Early communication. Little children have the ability to speak with their hands months before they are able to communicate with their voices. Think of the wonders in being able to understand your 10-month old!

9. Increased vocabulary. Students who learn to sign have been shown to have up to twice the usable vocabulary, signed and spoken, than their non-signing counterparts. Signing offers children an additional way to communicate that is stored and accessed in a different part of the brain from verbal memory.

10. Stimulates brain activity. Signing has been shown to foster brain development in children. American Sign Language encourages the brain to build synapses and dendrites. Signed words are stored in a separate part of the brain, learning ASL along with spoken words, enhances memory and recall of language.

Homeschool Connections currently offers four American Sign Language 8-week courses for the 2013/2014 school year. Students who already have some instruction in ASL are welcomed to join us in ASL II, III, or IV. See below for details. We plan to offer more upper level ASL courses in future years.

Live, Interactive ASL Courses
2013/2014 
(click on course title to register)

Fall Semester 2013
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American Sign Language (ASL) I
Note: This course is full and closed for registration. THERE ARE STILL PLENTY OF SEATS IN THE ASL I COURSE STARTING IN JANUARY (see below). There are also plenty of seats open for ASL II, III, and IV for this semester.

Note: This is Part Two of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear. ASL III and IV are offered again in the spring semester.
Class dates: Tuesdays, October 29 to December 17, 2013
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL I (Sept. 2013) or equivalent. Email homeschoolconnections@gmail.com if you have questions about what level of ASL would best fit your needs.
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th grade, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester ASL or Foreign Language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before August 1, 2013. $130.00 after Aug. 1st for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a second-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. Students will learn how to use classifiers, mouth morphemes, and quantifiers, as well as identify and sign words used in everyday life and practice conversations. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web camera, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline:
Class 1: Learning classifiers
Class 2: Classifiers in conversation
Class 3: Learning mouth morphemes
Class 4: Quantifiers: more or less?
Class 5: Questions and feelings
Class 6: Building Vocabulary: Nouns
Class 7: Building Vocabulary: Verbs
Class 8: Conversations
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided free online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Note: This is Part Three of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear. ASL I and IV is offered in October.
Class dates: Thursdays, September 5 to October 24, 2013
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL II or equivalent. Email homeschoolconnections@gmail.com if you have questions about what level of ASL would best fit your needs.
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester foreign language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before August 1, 2013. $130.00 after Aug. 1 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a third-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web cam, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline:
Week 1: More Numbers
Week 2:
Colors
Week 3:
More Adjectives
Week 4:
Travel & Position
Week 5:
Food & Meals
Week 6:
Education & Learning
Week 7:
Jobs & People
Week 8:
Conversations
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided FREE online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Note: This is Part Four of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear.
Class dates: Thursdays, October 31 to December 19, 2013. No class November 28th.
Total classes: 7 live classes plus 1 recorded class.
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL III (Sept. 2013) or equivalent. Email homeschoolconnections@gmail.com if you have questions about what level of ASL would best fit your needs.
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th grade, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester ASL or Foreign Language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before August 1, 2013. $130.00 after Aug. 1st for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a fourth-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web cam, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline: To be announced
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided FREE online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Spring 2014
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Note: This is a 4-part course. Students are expected to also register for ASL II starting in March. They may continue with ASL III and ASL IV next school year if they desire.
Class dates: Tuesdays, January 14 to March 4, 2014
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: None
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9thgrade, although older students are welcomed if they have no experience in ASL and have a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester ASL Foreign Language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before November 1, 2013. $130.00 after Nov. 1 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a beginning American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. Students will learn and practice fingerspelling, identifying and signing words used in everyday life; asking questions; special structure of sentences in ASL; the role of expression (non manual markers) in communication; the foundations of ASL’s history; Deaf culture; and practice words and sentences. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web camera on your computer, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline:
Class 1: Fingerspelling and Greetings
Class 2: The Family and Deaf History
Class 3: Around the House and Deaf Culture
Class 4: Numbers and Time
Class 5: Questions
Class 6: Building Vocabulary: Nouns
Class 7: Building Vocabulary: Verbs
Class 8: Conversations
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided FREE online by the instructor.  
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Note: This is Part Two of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear (email us if you are unsure if you meet the prerequisite). ASL III and IV will be offered again next school year.
Class dates: Tuesdays, March 11 to May 6, 2014. No class April 15th.
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL I (Jan. 2014) or equivalent.
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th grade, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester ASL or Foreign Language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before November 1, 2013. $130.00 after Nov. 1 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a second-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. Students will learn how to use classifiers, mouth morphemes, and quantifiers, as well as identify and sign words used in everyday life and practice conversations. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web cam , so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline:
Class 1: Learning classifiers
Class 2: Classifiers in conversation
Class 3: Learning mouth morphemes
Class 4: Quantifiers: more or less?
Class 5: Questions and feelings
Class 6: Building Vocabulary: Nouns
Class 7: Building Vocabulary: Verbs
Class 8: Conversations
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided FREE online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Note: This is Part Three of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear (email us if you are unsure if you meet the prerequisite). ASL  IV is offered in October.
Class dates: Thursdays, January 16 to March 6, 2014
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL II or equivalent (Fall 2013)
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th grade, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester ASL Foreign Language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before November 1, 2013. $130.00 after Nov. 1 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a third-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web cam, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline:
Week 1: More Numbers
Week 2:
Colors
Week 3:
More Adjectives
Week 4:
Travel & Position
Week 5:
Food & Meals
Week 6:
Education & Learning
Week 7:
Jobs & People
Week 8:
Conversations
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided FREE online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.

Note: This is Part Four of a 4-part course. New students are welcome to join us midyear (email us if you are unsure if you meet the prerequisite). Homeschool Connections plans to add more advanced ASL courses in the 2014/2015 school year.
Class dates: Thursdays, March 13 to May 8, 2014. No class April 17.
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 11:00 AM Eastern (10:00 am Central)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: ASL III or equivalent (Fall 2013 or Spring 2014)
Suggested grade level: 6th to 9th grade, although older students are welcomed if they a strong desire to take this course.
High school credit: 1/2 semester foreign language
Fee: $110 if you enroll on or before November 1, 2013. $130.00 after Nov. 1 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Allison Gingras, M.Ed.
Course description: This course is a fourth-level American Sign Language (ASL) course for those who would like a strong foundation in learning to communicate with American Sign Language. IMPORTANT! This course is a video course; it is a requirement that you have a web cam, so that you can interact and sign within the course learning time—with immediate feedback and encouragement.
Course outline: To be announced
Course materials: A working web cam is required (most newer computers have them built in). Everything else is provided free online from the instructor.
Homework: Weekly practice of the signs and conversations covered in the course, watching videos of signing, and review within signed conversations during class time.


12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I use ASL to communicate with my autistic child. Would love to see more people educated in this language.

Anonymous said...

The giveaway's cool.

Kathleen said...

My son is interested in taking sign language but cant take it this year. Are you planning on having sign language 1 in fall 2014?

Unknown said...

Would LOVE to win, anything ;) Thanks for doing this give away.

Unknown said...

great give away! Thanks! Am looking forward to reading more of your blog!

Kathleen said...

My son is interested in taking sign language but cant take it this year. Are you planning on having sign language 1 in fall 2014?

Homeschool Connections said...

Dear Kathleen,

YES! We plan to keep offering ASL. In fact, we hope to expand the ASL offerings in 2015/2016.

Blessings to your new school year!!!

Anonymous said...

yes!

Sarah said...

Sign language was such a benefit to my toddler!

Kim L said...

I just love the free homeschool webinars.

Anonymous said...

Great Contest idea!

HeidiA said...

As I teacher of ASL vocabulary to help pre-verbal and non-verbal children communicate, I am so excited to see this being offered!