In quickly or to solve a problem efficiently.

In this lesson plan, students will learn about sign language. This lesson plan involves collaborative discussion about an informational text as well as some partner activities in which the students will practice sign language.

Learning Objectives

  • Analyze an informational text about sign language
  • Interpret a personal anecdote using sign language
  • Recite the alphabet in sign language

Length

45-60 minutes

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Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.

    3

Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.

    5.7

Draw on information from multiple print or digital sources, demonstrating the ability to locate an answer to a question quickly or to solve a problem efficiently.

  • CCSS.

    ELA-Literacy.RF.5.

    4.a

Read grade-level text with purpose and understanding.

Materials

  • Blank paper
  • Multiple sets of sign language alphabet flashcards
  • Multiple ASL dictionaries
  • Copies of Sign Language: Lesson for Kids, one per student
  • Copies of the quiz

Lesson Instructions

  • Distribute blank paper to students. Tell them that they have 60 seconds to write down as many languages that they can think of.
  • After the 60 seconds are up, call on students to share responses. Inform students that today they are going to learn about one particular language – sign language.
  • Distribute copies of Sign Language: Lesson for Kids to students.

  • Read the ‘Body Signals’ section aloud to students as they follow along. Ask:
    • What hand signals do you use in your everyday life?
    • What do you think it would be like to not be able to hear?
  • Read the ‘History of Sign Language’ section aloud to students as they follow along. Ask:
    • Who created sign language?
    • Why was sign language created?
  • Read ‘Different Forms of Sign Language’ section aloud to students as they follow along.

    Ask:

    • Do you think that every country should have the same sign language?
  • Read the ‘Sign Language Alphabet’ section aloud to students as they follow along. Ask students to look at the alphabet picture in the article. Ask:
    • How do you spell your name in sign language?
  • Read the remainder of the text aloud to students as they follow along. Ask:
    • What does an interpreter do?
    • Where have you seen an interpreter before?
    • If you could be bilingual in any two languages in the world, what would they be?
  • Distribute the quiz. Ask students to take the quiz independently. Review answers as a class.

Activities

ABC Race

  • Divide students into pairs.

    Distribute flashcards to pairs.

  • Students will test each other on the sign language alphabet.
  • If they master this, allow them to practice doing the entire alphabet, racing one another to see who can do it the fastest.

What’s in a Name?

  • Tell students that they are going to serve as the interpreter for their partner. Their partner will give an oral presentation about their name. In their presentation, they will spell their name and give a 1-2 minutes oral description of how they got their name. Their partner will interpret alongside of the presenter to the best of their ability.
    • Students will need to use the ASL dictionaries.
  • Allow each student a chance to serve as interpreter.

Related Lessons

  • The History of Sign Language
  • The Deaf Community: History and Culture
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