SignWriting List Archive 1
October 1997 - May 1998

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December 4th, 1997

SUBJECT: Feedback From 3 Groups


Kent State University
Date: Fri, 21 Nov 1997 08:52:33 -0500 (EST)
Subject: SW program! PAH!

Hi Valerie! I just wanted to let you know about the program :) It was wonderful --- I thank you so much for the materials! Wed night a Deaf woman who teaches ASL a teacher of the deaf from a bi-bi program (who I will be student teaching with) and 4 deafed majors attended the program.

We had a good varietty of people and perspectives but I think everyone left with a great feeling of potential for the written form of ASL!! The teacher from the bi-bi program borrowed the tapes & books to share with other teachers --- I learned a lot myself and with this teachers support I may very well be teaching Sign Writing next semester to ASL classes and perhaps even in the language/literacy classes---- The bi-bi program is being researched, observed & documented which just began as a grant written by one of my professors at Kent so this may well be part of that study!

The coolest thing happened too.... my husband had to work late so I had to take my 4 year old daughter (hearing) to the program with me..... she was watching the videos and running to the chalk board to write signs!!!!!!!



Rutgers Sign Language Club

Date: Tue, 2 Dec 1997 02:17:05 -0500 (EST)
From: Keng-yu Chuang <>

Dear Ms. Sutton,
hi, I don't know if you still remember me. I am the president for the Rutgers American Sign Language Club. I am really sorry for the delay on giving you the feedback on the video tapes you sent me. I just showed them to my club members today and I received a great great appraisal on Sign Writing. So far we only had one workshop on ASL and the material which our teacher uses is quite conventional, i.e., we use pictures of hands and arms moving in front of a headless body (or with head) if you know what I mean. The members all agreed on the inabilities of those pictures to express spatial orientations to the students and it's very difficult for us to figure out the correct hand movements just based on the pictures. Sign Writing on the other hand, provides a much more superior way to express the spatial orientations of the hands and furthermore, the symbols are extremely intuitive to learn.

Keng-yu Chuang


ASL Linguistics Class
Delaware Technical & Community College

Date: Wed, 03 Dec 1997 10:40:00 -0500 (EST)
From: "William L. Collins 892-1672" <>

Dear Valerie,
Thanks for your good luck wishes. The presentation last night went well, and I was even able to use the latest lesson (contact symbols) from the Web, so that was great timing!

The students in the class (and the instructor) seemed quite interested in SignWriting. Most of these people have taken 4 courses in ASL, plus several more classes in Deaf issues, Deaf culture, and ASL linguistics. Some will soon be going on to the college's Interpreter Training program. I started by giving them just the beginning of the "Goldilocks" story, in SignWriting only, just to see what they would make of it. They quickly grasped the meaning of the SignWriting symbols, and they wanted more.

Several people asked about additional information, so I gave them the URL for your Web site. Someone also said she wished she had known about SignWriting back when she was first learning ASL; the the discussion around this was interesting and brought out an application for SignWriting that hadn't occurred to me, and which I wanted to share:

When hearing students are learning sign, they are constantly being shown new signs by their instructor. Often, these are regional variations or colloquial expressions or classifiers that don't appear in standard sign dictionaries, so we would frantically take bizarre notes that attempted to capture--either with arrows and scribbles or convoluted English descriptions--what the sign looked like so that we could remember it later. Clearly, knowing SignWriting would have made our note-taking easier, cleaner, and more consistent during all those earlier classes.

At any rate, after last night, there are some new people who have been exposed to SignWriting, and who have had their interest and curiosity aroused by its potential. Thanks again for everything; you should be getting my paper in the next couple of days.

Best wishes,

Bill Collins



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