Home > About Sign Language > How to Start Teaching Signed Language

How to Start Teaching Signed Language

By: Joanne Walker BA (hons) - Updated: 8 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Teaching Sign Language Basics

Teaching sign language is an incredibly worthwhile thing to do, whether it is to parents of deaf children or to people who want to learn sign language with a view to communicating with deaf people at work, socially or by volunteering. Without people to teach sign language, there would be no way of passing on the skills and it would be in danger of dying out. But for anyone who wants to start to teach sign language, they may well want to know where to start.

Basics of Teaching

First and foremost, anyone who wants to learn how to teach sign language has to learn sign language itself. This may sound obvious but it is imperative that anyone who wants to teach others how to use and communicate with sign language can do so themselves. In the business of communication, a teacher being able to put across exactly what they mean in a clear and concise way is absolutely imperative.

Teaching Experience

The other thing anyone wanting to teach sign language will need is teaching experience. But because of the nature of sign language, many people come into it without any experience of teaching. Many deaf people go into teaching sign language when they realise how important a skill it is for people such as parents of deaf children to have. But this can often mean that the teachers of sign language have no experience. Of course, everyone has to start somewhere, but, if you fall into this category, then it could give you a massive advantage when it comes to getting a job to have had some teaching experience, even if it is unpaid.

Therefore, it may be worth asking local voluntary and community groups if they want or need anyone to help out with the teaching of sign language to their members. This way, you can brush up on your teaching skills before applying for jobs.

Certificates

When you are confident that teaching sign language is for you, you may want to get some kind of certificate or accreditation that shows you are a competent teacher. This can take many forms and really depends on whether you want to make teaching a career or if it something you are doing for pleasure.

If you think it could be a career move for you, then it may well be worth investigating doing a PGCE and gaining your teaching credentials that way. On the other hand, if you do not want to do a full time teaching course such as that, there are plenty of British Sign Language associations which will offer certificates to prove you can communicate effectively through sign language.

Whether or not you want to make teaching sign language a career or if you just want it to be a pastime, going about it in the right way will make you a better teacher and help you to get more enjoyment out of it. It will also give your pupils confidence in your ability – and confidence to choose you as a teacher which will hopefully be fully justified when they start learning sign language and really experience for themselves what a good teacher you are.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Tony
    Re: Makaton
    @Jordi - you can find some sessions on You Tube.
    24 July 2017
  • Jordi
    Re: Makaton
    I'm soon to start a new job working with disabled children on a school transport service, I currently work on hospital transport for mental health dementia…
    22 July 2017
  • Kaz
    Re: Makaton
    Can you show me picture sign in makaton for ! Special Person ? Please?
    8 June 2017
  • Justin Lee Carr
    Re: Where to Learn Sign Language
    I have a TBI but would like to work my damaged brain AGAIN. What will BSL mean to me?
    5 June 2017
  • Tkote
    Re: Academic Advantages of Sign Language
    Well and realistic statements that is really securing to improve communication skills that interchangeably and equally…
    9 March 2017
  • Kore
    Re: Academic Advantages of Sign Language
    Student studying at Wabag Secondary School
    25 February 2017
  • Jane
    Re: Lip Reading
    Wanted lip reader urgently south London. Friend had accident can only mouth words we need to understand her...please help will pay for services. Thank…
    10 February 2017
  • Don't have 1
    Re: Makaton
    I would just like to have a makaton id card cos I learned it at college and I just want a I'd card I tried everything to get one even in the speech and…
    11 November 2016
  • Lisa Williams
    Re: Auditory Verbal Therapy
    Dear signed language. I'm deaf looking for job of the world. I am a profoundly Deaf British Sign Language user, I am keen to use my…
    4 July 2016
  • Inds
    Re: Sign Supported English
    I want to be someone who helps people when I'm older and I am trying to learn BSL so I can talk or help deaf people, is there any free…
    2 July 2016
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the SignedLanguage website. Please read our Disclaimer.