[sw-l] left-handed or right-handed?

Mon Dec 6 16:09:50 UTC 2004

Hi Sandy:

>While left-handedness may be virtually unnoticeable in actual signing, it's
>a different matter in classes of sign-language learners. I have no
>experience of teaching children but this makes me wonder if a left-handed
>Deaf child would be discriminated against quite severely if having to learn
>their first writing system from a right-handed dictionary.

I'm left-handed and when taking signing classes, or learning out of books,
I just transpose the signs to fit my handedness. Thus if the teacher is
standing in front of me and showing how to make a sign, I just use the
hands on the same side to make the sign (mirroring). Since the teacher's
right side is my left side when facing me, this makes it easy.

When reading signwriting, since it is written from the expressive view, if
I were going to try to sign what I read, I'd just use the hands as though
it was written from the receptive view. That's how I compensate.

I'd much rather have only one way of writing signs--so as not to get
confused. So it doesn't bother me that signwriting is shown right-handed.
After all, about 90% of people are right-handed. I write signs
right-handed, but when signing, I sign left-handed.

Anyway, that is my personal opinion on this subject. We lefties learn to
adapt as we have to do lots of things "backwards" in this right-handed world.



Neil Bauman, Ph.D.
Center for Hearing Loss Help
49 Piston Court
Stewartstown, PA 17363
Phone: (717) 993-8555
FAX: (717) 993-6661
Email: neil at hearinglosshelp.com
Website: http://www.hearinglosshelp.com

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