ASL Tales
© ASL Tales:2015
Deaf Students – Benefits Across the Age Span Clearly the best strategies for effectively teach Deaf students need to be considered by trained experts, using researched approaches. We aren’t pretending to offer that here. What we do know, and have seen, is that even without researched curriculum Deaf students and their families and teachers are getting amazing results from our books. Early Years Because ASL Tales is designed for even non-signers, Deaf children who are still learning language are being delighted by, and repeatedly watching, our books. That alone is an important part of early literacy, but what makes this work better is that parents and siblings are learning at the same time.    We know that exposure to fluent language users is the way all children learn their native language.  In the case of Deaf children, this access is often limited, and ASL Tales gives children access to a linguistically rich, easy to decode form of ASL.  And, as with hearing children who understand the words before they are drawn to reading them, ASL Tales encourages children to discover how the English text says the ideas they are already enjoying. Generally hearing families have to rely on sign language videos and books that teach them the signs for English words.  Though this is more useful than no signs at all, any fluent ASL user know that this is only a small part of an ASL message.  When parents are thinking in signs, and Deaf children are communicating in visual messages, even the most well-intended parent can be frustrated. The ASL Clues, and the other tools in our Learning Center make it possible for families to learn how ASL thinks about conveying ideas, and gives them important practice in both decoding and encoding visual messages. We want Deaf children to learn to love to read.  We know you do too.  Our experience is that ASL Tales puts young children on a path to building the “wanna” for reading. Elementary Years Again, ASL Tales does not pretend to be an expert in teaching Deaf children to read. What we do know is that there is a there are, at best, a limited number of ASL- English paired materials that honor the discourse of both languages.  As we’ve said throughout this website, our products were created with a commitment to storytelling designed to use the greatest possible visual elements of ASL, while honoring that English literature does not include the same level of detail.  At each grade level, this provides teachers an opportunity to explore vital elements of reading and writing.   (see ) . ASL Tales is the best inoculation we know of for sign-for-word reading! High School years You might question how children’s books could possibly be appropriate for a high school student.  Yet, we have had several teachers get great results from their students. ASL Tales calls forth really understanding the deeper meaning of an English text, and as in any translation, we only offer on possible version of an English message.  But using our DVDs as a model for really exploring the story, students have taken on telling each of our books from a different perspective or in a novel way.  This complex metalinguistic task has been used by a range of high students  - from those with limited English skills to students who are fully bi-lingual.  Foreign language educators know the benefit of children’s literature as an important tool to explore text translation and advancing student learning.  Help us create curriculum We are always looking for innovative teachers who’d like to test our products in the classroom and help us developing teaching strategies to share.  Contact us for free and discounted materials if you’d like to participate. Note:  DVDs-only for classroom use may be purchased for students in the upper grades who would not necessarily benefit from the physical book.  Contact us for details.