The Life Cycle of an ASL Student

You’ve discovered the magic of ASL.

You’re the teacher’s pet in your class.

You watch ASL videos on YouTube like a fiend.

You even go to an occasional Deaf event. 

Trouble With ASL, Student, Class, Deaf Culture Problems, Spying on People GIF

 

 

 

 

 

(Well, no one said you actually had to go in and meet people…)

You know you’ve found your life calling.

 

But it hasn’t always been this way. You’ve paid your dues and survived the life cycle of an ASL student. It’s been a hard road getting here.

Remember your first day of class, when you looked like this…

And facial expressions didn’t come easily…

…at all…

Trouble With ASL, Student, Class, Deaf Culture Problems, Write Everything, GIF ASL Facial Expressions

 

 

 

 

…No matter how hard you tried.

    

Two hours into your class’s “Deaf Day”, you resorted to writing everything down just to achieve basic communication.

Lady standing in window with poster saying "Angry"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remember the first time a Deaf person signed to you…

…and uncontrolled panic took over…

…and you couldn’t even remember how to sign “HI”…

…so you resorted to your “fail safe” sign.

When you watched two Deaf people chat, you looked like this…

Trouble With ASL, Student, Class, Deaf Culture Problems, Write Everything, GIF ASL Facial Expressions GIF ASL Hard to watch conversation 1

 

 

 

 

And when you finally understood enough to try to join the conversation,

…you always felt like you were interrupting.

And you were terrified some Deaf person would do this…

…or this…

…so when you didn’t understand, you tried to fake it…

Man is shaking head in a confused way - trying to understand what is going on in a Deaf conversation.

 

…and silently prayed for someone to come to your rescue.

 

Then, of course, there were those moments when no amount of faking would work…

…and you wondered why you took ASL in the first place.

You wanted to give up…

…even though you finally conquered this facial expression.

 

But then, the magical day came, when you understood your first Deaf conversation…

Will Smith surprised.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

…and it took everything inside of you not to do this…

…or this…

…or this…

(Though you did do a happy dance when you were alone.)

 

 

So now that you’re over the hump and improving day-by-day,

though you may still have a long way to go before fluency…

And there may still be times that you still need to resort to your “fail safe” sign…

…you do it with a lot more confidence…

…and you feel like you’ve conquered the hearing world…

.and entered the Deaf world.

How to Make a Switched at Birth Episode    10 Reasons Why Deaf Cherish ASL

What’s Wrong with Deaf Day?!?

[The Deaf Dream organization has internships for Deaf and hearing ASL students to empower Deaf worldwide. Click here to learn more.]

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10 Responses to The Life Cycle of an ASL Student

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  2. R says:

    I LOVE these clip – as an ASL Master Tutor of 19 years witnessing growth of an ASL students’ cycle of learning – this is so true!

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  4. esmichelesreflection says:

    Reblogged this on Esmichele and commented:
    Yes.

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