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Corduroy by Don Freeman is a beloved classic. It is about a cute, little bear in a department store that so wants to find his forever home with a child. A little girl finds him and wants to bring him home. However, the girl's mother says Corduroy doesn't look new because he is missing a button. The story’s adventures unfold from there. Corduroy was named one of the “Top 100 Picture Books” of all time by the School Library Journal and also “Teachers’ Top 100 Books for Children” by the National Education Association. There are several different lessons that can be covered through the telling of this story. You will find many different activities on teaching sites and sites like Pinterest that will give you plenty of follow-up things to do with this book.  If you like the book, the adventures of Corduroy continue in several other Corduroy books! Get the Pre-Built Word List for this Book! I hope through the Corduroy word list you will feel...
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Little Brown by Marla Frazee is a delightful little story about dogs and their goofy behavior. Most children love dogs. They love to play with them and watch them as they play with other dogs. This is a book all about dogs and the funny ways they interact together. Little Brown is one cranky canine because no one ever plays with him at the animal shelter. Or maybe no one ever plays with him because he is cranky. Either way, Little Brown decides today is the day to take action, so he takes all of the toys and sticks and blankets from all of the dogs at the shelter and won’t give them back. But what will happen next? Extension Actvities You can find more ideas for actvities related to dogs on Pinterest. Here are some activities from Pinterest to check out for inspiration:    Get the Pre-Built Word List for this Book! I hope through the Little Brown word list you will feel confident to share this story with your children. You can also bring up signs on the Signing Savvy...
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Recently, I was contacted by a young hearing mother of a 10-month old, deaf child. This mother had two other children that are hearing, she works full time outside of the home, and now her third child was born profoundly deaf. She has tried her best to read and learn everything she can about deafness and educational options. She and her husband have decided they will be using sign language with their family. She was taking formal classes and then acting as the "teacher" for the rest of her family. She felt that so far, the family had been doing a pretty good job trying to learn ASL. She spoke of how sweet it was to see the older siblings doing their best to try and communicate with their new baby brother, who will be using sign language as his primary source of communication. This mother did share one thing she was feeling very guilty about though; something she knew she did with her hearing children, that she was NOT doing for her deaf child… reading and sharing literacy with...
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"Self-care" is a popular topic in recent years, and the trend isn’t slowing down. One problem noticed by your authors, however, is that there seem to be competing definitions of this idea and it’s causing a breakdown in the discussion about the importance of self-care. Should self-care be understood as indulgence? Eating a piece of chocolate cake because it’s been a rough day and this will help you to feel better? Or should self-care be thought of as goal-setting? Training for a marathon because you’ve always wanted to try it and enjoy testing your limits? What is self-care? Is self-care indulgence or goal-setting? The contradiction is stark, and creating a life you don’t need to escape from takes hard work, sacrifice, and patience. In reality, maybe self-care is just letting yourself be "normal." Doing things like sitting down and paying your bills, enforcing a morning routine, cooking healthy meals, working out, putting some oil into your bath,...
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Maisy’s Colors by Lucy Cousins is chunky book that is simple and filled with colors for little ones just beginning to learn about the world. It combines colorful pictures with simple illustrations that capture the young reader's eye. As very young children's eye sight develops, they learn to enjoy color more and more. This book will be a book that appeals to children when they are very young, yet stay with them as they grow and begin to read. Learning Colors in ASL We have two handouts on signing color in ASL that you can also use as a reference when reading this book. The first one is a reference for signing all of the colors in ASL and the second color handout is meant to inspire you to think about the colors in the food rainbow.    Extension Actvities Kids love to learn through food, so talking about the colors of different foods and tasting them is a great activity for little ones. Some of my favorite food rainbow recipes are ones that highlight the...
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Time For Bed is a classic book by Mem Fox, with beautiful illustrations by Jane Dyer. It is a great bedtime book. It explores it's way through different pairs of baby and adult animals, showing them all getting ready to sleep. It is a great language tool to teach the names for baby animals and begin discussions about how they rest at night, just like we do. You can also find links on Pinterest to activities that discuss the importance of rest and how stretching can help foster relaxation and prepare you for bed. Here is an article that includes a free printable of animal-themed stretches to do at bedtime. And also links to Tips for Toddlers that Fight Bedtime. They are worth giving a try.  As parents, we know how difficult bedtime can be for some little ones. I hope through the Time For Bed word list you will feel confident to share this story with your children. You can also bring up signs on the Signing Savvy Member App using the pre-built word list as you go...
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My Animals by Xavier Deneux is a very simple animal book. The entire book is in black and white. Research shows that an infant’s ability to see colors is not fully developed at birth, but rather matures between five and six months of age. This book introduces images of some common animals many children’s books include, but minus the color. It’s simple to sign and fun to share with not only infants, but children of all ages. For more information on how babies see color, check out this article on the development of color vision in infants. You can also learn more about how to use printables to help babies with eye development and find more black and white images for infants and black and white animal photography on Pinterest. I hope through the My Animals word list you will feel confident to share this story with your children. You can also bring up signs on the Signing Savvy Member App using the pre-built word list as you go through the book. Word...
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Clayton Valli (Photo Credit: Clayton Valli “Nurturing ASL Literature”) American Sign Language (ASL) is its own beautiful and rich language that has its own unique grammar and syntax. This was proven by linguists at Gallaudet University in the mid-twentieth century. Since then, more aspects of ASL have been defined, including ASL literature. ASL Literature is defined as creative works that have stood the test of time and reflect the deaf experience. These can be visual works, folk lore, plays, legends, or even personal experiences. One significant genre is poetry. These signed works tell stories in visual ways and also have elements of poetry, just like written poetry. Clayton Valli was a notable ASL poet and linguist who identified aspects of ASL poetry and was a significant community member who contributed to the growing legitimacy of ASL. On May 25, 1951 Clayton L Valli was born deaf in Newburyport, Massachusetts. He was named after his father and had two brothers and two...
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Allen Snare was born Deaf with his hearing twin sister Faye on April 14, 1947. Allen grew up in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, with his three brothers and three sisters who were all hearing. He attended the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf in Philadelphia and he loved it! He had full access to communication at school. However, access at church was a different story. Allen Snare during an interview. (Photo Credit: Jim Bracelin. Testimony of a Deaf Man.) Allen grew up attending church with no interpreter. He was clueless of what was being said, until one day, in 1968, when he was invited to a church hosting a week-long revival conference. It just so happened they had an interpreter. That was the first time Allen was exposed to an interpreter. Bill Rice III was a visiting Pastor from the Bill Rice Ranch, a ministry with a goal of reaching the deaf through local revival meetings, regional events, and camps. Bill’s wife Mary interpreted while Bill preached that day. "When Bill Rice asked me if...
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Kitty O'Neil in 1976 with the rocket-powered SMI Motivator vehicle she used to set the land-speed record for women - a record she still holds today. (Photo Credit: Ky Michaelson) Known as "the fastest woman in the world," Kitty O’Neil was born in Corpus Christi, Texas on March 24, 1946. She became deaf at the age of 4 months. She had a variety of illnesses including measles, mumps and the chicken pox - one or all of which led to her becoming profoundly deaf. Despite her early illnesses, she became a phenomenal athlete. She said, "My mother pushed me to read lips… but she didn’t push me in sports – I did that myself. Because I was deaf, I had a very positive mental attitude. You have to show people you can do anything." She fell in love with swimming and diving. She finished in twelfth place in the U.S. team trials for the Olympics in Tokyo, where she specialized in diving. Her Olympic dream came to a quick stop in 1964 when she became ill with...
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