Learning English through Sign Language

These English students at a Paris University have been learning British Sign Language over two semesters. Students have reported an improvement in using their hands to explain English words…

The course has been delivered in a blended learning format, combining traditional face to face teaching with e-learning content to be accessed outside of the classroom.

Take a peek at what the course covers

The video is in French, however here’s a summary:

The students have reported that they are more confident public speakers and they now look people in the eye.

What’s more, many report an improvement in using their hands to explain English words such as “link” or “yesterday.” They developed an understanding of how to explain adverbs without resorting to the French language – “walking slowly and rapidly” had new meaning.

This course has shown that Sign Language is much more than gestures. It has shown the possibility of using British Sign Language to teach English in a country where learning English is very difficult to do.

Some are going on to be English teachers, and others are to work in politics. The methods they have gained within this course will surely have a ripple effect.

2 thoughts on “Learning English through Sign Language

  1. Are they hearing or hard of hearing students? If hearing how do you present your lectures? Are they English or French? What language do you use? Do you work with an interpreter or on your own…… Flabagasted.

    • They are hearing students. There are many ways to present in sign language without a interpreter, we simply switch to a visual way of teaching. It’s like learning a foreign language, you do not automatically resort to English to explain things in sign language, you simply immerse the students in the language. Let’s have a chat about teaching methods sometime 🙂

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