In order for you to have amazing communication with deaf and hard of hearing people in American Sign Language (ASL) with short and long phrases – you’ll want to learn the manual alphabet, numbers from one to ten, how to use sign expressions, and one-word questions.
Some certain words and phrases are essential to know when communicating with others. Some of these short phrases include, “I love you,” “How are you?” and “Great job!” and long sentences like, “Do you live here? How many years?” or “How many cups of water do you drink daily?”
Deaf and hard of hearing people will appreciate it if you took some time to learn sign language and use it to interact with them through the Deaf community! We will kick off with some most popular and frequent phrases you can learn and practice with just in case you bump into a deaf or hard of hearing person.
Most popular phrases in Sign Language
Keep in mind that ASL is a visual-manual language with a structure that is different from spoken English, which means when you see a phrase in bold – it is in English that helps you identify which one you’d like to practice with through sign language.
However, you’ll see a phrase italicized that you’ll want to use when communicating with a deaf or hard of hearing person. You’ll notice that ASL does not use the verb to be (e.g., is/are, was/were, will, etc.).
Oftentimes, deaf, and hard of people (signers) may use grammatical information with their faces, bodies, and the surrounding space, which will give you more of a heightened visual dimension.
- How are you? “How you?”
- I am good, how about you? “I/Me good, how you?”
- What is your name? “You Name?”
- Spell your name slow, please. “Name slow spell please.”
- My name is (fingerspell your name). “I/Me name (fingerspell your name)”
- Nice to meet you. “Nice meet you”
- Are you deaf? “Deaf you?”
- Say again, please? “Again please?”
- How can I help you? “How I/me help you?”
- Is this yours? “This (point at any object) your?”
- Where are you from? “Where you from?”
- Do you live here? “You live here?”
- Where do you work? “You work where?”
- Do you go to school? “You go school you?”
- How old are you? “How old you?”