ASL Club: Speaking a 3D Language


Stefanny Hernandez

ASL, or American Sign Language, is the language in which deaf and HOH (Hard of Hearing) people in the United States and Canada use to communicate. ASL is a completely visual language that you have to see to understand. In addition to hand signals, facial expressions and movements are crucial to your understanding of ASL. 

On January 6, 2022, the first meeting of the ASL club was held, being run by freshman Stefanny Hernandez and juniors Leilani Lepe and Carlos Trejo who created the club which was sponsored by Mrs. Shields. The turnout was incredible and very unexpected. The club had a class full of people eager to learn more about sign language.

“I think it’s an advantage to know sign language, like in English it helps me out when a teacher tells me how to spell something, my hand actually spells it for me and I just think deaf culture is beautiful,” says Lepe, one ASL club leader.

The first meeting covered the alphabet and how to introduce yourself, which just consisted of signing “My name is…” and then you spelling your name out with your newfound knowledge of the alphabet. Members also played a game where you had to figure out what the phrase was with just pictures of hands signing letters in ASL.

“Actually I really like ASL. We don’t have a class for it here and I really wanted to learn,” said sophomore Zoriah Brooks 

During the second meeting, members were taught the numbers 0 to one hundred and also played a game of bingo. The students enjoyed the practice of learning and recognising their numbers in sign language. 

As a community, it is important for us to be able to communicate with those around us. Three million people in California alone are deaf and the numbers are rising with more additions of deaf schools. It’s crucial to educate everybody about the minority groups of our society.

ASL club has weekly meetings on Thursdays in room 324. For more information and questions follow their Instagram @jwnasl or join the remind with code “c8cbce”