October is National Bullying Prevention Month – http://www.pacer.org/bullying/

7 Things You Should Know About Sign Language by Arika Okrent

A friend recently shared this informative article with me. There is so much good information I felt the need to expound on it.

The site MentalFloss.com advertises to be the place where “Knowledge Junkies Get Their Fix”

In a recent post “7 Things You Should Know About Sign Language” by Arika Okrent. I found many interesting sub-links throughout the article I felt would be interesting to our viewing audience. Let us know if you find the following of interest.

 – MentalFloss.com – “Link”

 – 7 Things You Should Know About Sign Language – “Link”

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 – Who is Arika Okrent? – “Link”

 – More posts by Arika – “Link”

 – Arika Okrent Website – “Link”

Sign Language Aimed at the Heart | Allyson Townsend | ASL music | From ABC News

This article shared from ABC News | “World News with Diane Sawyer”

Allyson Townsend isn’t deaf, and she doesn’t have any family members that are hearing impaired. Yet she meticulously dedicates her time to signing out popular hits like Taylor Swift’s “Back to December” in American Sign Language for her 21,835 viewers to enjoy on her YouTube channel, “Ally ASL Songs”.

The 22-year-old graduated from Baylor University in 2010 after majoring in deaf education, but she first gained an interest in ASL as a child when her deaf friend wasn’t able to understand her love of music.

“She asked me, ‘How do you know which words to sing at which point and how do you know how long to say the word?’ and just asked me questions like that,” she said.

So Townsend made her friend a music video, an ASL version of Sixpence None the Richer’s “Kiss Me.”

“She loved it,” she said. “She absolutely loved it. She asked me to do more.”

Four years ago, she started posting other songs online. Since then, she has covered a vast array of music, from “Baby It’s Cold Outside” by Zooey Deschanel and Leon Redbone to “Tik Tok” by Ke$ha.

Today, more than 4,992,008 people have watched her videos, and although her fans can’t hear any music, they still respond to the posts.

The comment board on her channel is full of thankful viewers, like xFallenXAngelx0811.

“Omg, thank you so much for putting this up,” the comment reads. “I’m deaf, so it’s great to be able to actually hear the music.”

Another dedicated viewer, TheStrawberry67 wrote, “I love watching you sign because I am a deaf 13-year-old and I can understand some of my favorite songs by you signing. You make words very clear for me to understand. Thanks!”

“The way you move your body, whether it’s a fast song or a slow song, they’re really able to connect to that and experience that from your body and facial expression,” said Townsend. “Signing songs is like painting pictures with your hands. It’s very visual, you can see it, you’re setting up a story board in the air.”

Townsend now is a second grade teacher in Mesquite, TX, and most of the children in her class are completely deaf.

“When I see a child that has been exposed to music who has never had that exposure before it makes me feel great,” she said. “It makes me feel like I have been able to provide them with something they can have for the rest of their lives.”

To follow Ally on You Tube go to this link:  “Ally ASL Songs”.

Street Leverage is our ASL SIgn Language Interpreter site pick of the week

Congratulations and a big thank you to Street Leverage on their 1 year anniversary! It is no wonder they have such a following with the quality up to date, interesting, and well written information they provide.

It is clear Brandon’s “labor of love” is benefitting many of us daily in the sign language interpreting community.

We have added the Street Leverage link to our blog roll for easy access. If you haven’t seen the site please check it out.

Keep Amplifying the Voice of the Sign Language Interpreter Brandon and Team! Fine job.

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