Signed Songs

BecLak

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Are all songs interpreted into sign language done in PSE? There are so many signs to try and fit in to such a short space of time. I'm all fingers and palms trying to keep up in church. Aargh!
 
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Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
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Are all songs interpreted into sign language done in PSE? There are so many signs to try and fit in to such a short space of time. I'm all fingers and palms trying to keep up in church. Aargh!

Not if done by a good interpreter.
 

Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
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Are all songs interpreted into sign language done in PSE? There are so many signs to try and fit in to such a short space of time. I'm all fingers and palms trying to keep up in church. Aargh!
You're not supposed to interpret a song with a word-to-sign ratio.

Normally, if there's enough time to prep, a song can be interpreted in ASL, not PSE. If there isn't time to prep, then the song more likely will be PSE. Even then, it's still not signed word-to-sign.

When I say, "no time to prep," I mean no time. For example, last night at church we had a singspiration service. That means, during part of the service, members are allowed to raise their hands to request a specific hymn. The choir director calls on someone, they shout out the number of the hymn, we turn to that page in the book, and start singing. I barely have time to turn to the right page before I have to begin signing. No prep time. We did at least a dozen hymns that way last night. Even then, I wasn't signing a SEE transliteration. No way.
 

BecLak

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Thanks Reba and Botts. I noticed that every word was being signed in the songs. I couldn't keep up as they were all new songs for me. There are a number of hearing people in the church that are having a go at interpreting. One woman signed 'school' incorrectly. She actually signed 'sorry' lol. The main interpreter is good. However she admitted to me that she is still learning all the time, because there is a diversity of age groups. She says signs are evolving all the time. The older folk use signs that are rarely used now and then there is also the different ' dialects' from each region. There is the southern dialect and the northern dialect and where I am located (somewhere in between), it is a mixture of both.

Since I am still learning grammar, I guess I am even signing more PSE at the moment, but my aim is to correct that as quickly as possible, however it seems they are using a lot of PSE, especially with the songs and then those hearing people who are learning Sign. Its not helping me much,but on the upside, I am glad I am noticing the differences, i guess that is one step forward in the right direction. At least they are understanding me ok when I sign, which is a good thing for now I guess. Should I discuss this with them? How do you approach something like this? I am wanting to learn proper grammar.
 

BecLak

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Apologies for double posting - my Internet connection is playing up on me!
 
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Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
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Thanks Reba and Botts. I noticed that every word was being signed in the songs. I couldn't keep up as they were all new songs for me. There are a number of hearing people in the church that are having a go at interpreting. One woman signed 'school' incorrectly. She actually signed 'sorry' lol. The main interpreter is good. However she admitted to me that she is still learning all the time, because there is a diversity of age groups. She says signs are evolving all the time. The older folk use signs that are rarely used now and then there is also the different ' dialects' from each region. There is the southern dialect and the northern dialect and where I am located (somewhere in between), it is a mixture of both.

Since I am still learning grammar, I guess I am even signing more PSE at the moment, but my aim is to correct that as quickly as possible, however it seems they are using a lot of PSE, especially with the songs and then those hearing people who are learning Sign. Its not helping me much,but on the upside, I am glad I am noticing the differences, i guess that is one step forward in the right direction. At least they are understanding me ok when I sign, which is a good thing for now I guess. Should I discuss this with them? How do you approach something like this? I am wanting to learn proper grammar.
My first questions are about the hearing people who are learning sign language. Are they learning it for "fun" in order to sign with each other? Or are they learning it in order to communicate with deaf people? Are they expecting to someday interpret sign language?
 

Bottesini

Old Deaf Ranter
Premium Member
I think you should just learn from your deaf friends and leave the song signing at church. It's more performance and poetry than useful for signing in the real world.
 

BecLak

Well-Known Member
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Good advice as always, Botts, thank you. That is the common sense thing to do. All this other is distracting nonetheless less :-s
 

Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
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I think it's a mixed bag there Reba to be honest.
I'll give my perspective as an interpreter. Obviously, the best perspectives are from the deaf community but since you mentioned there is an interpreter involved, I'll address that.

A professional, ITP-graduate interpreter knows that using song interpretation for novice hearing signers is not a preferred way to teach ASL. In my ITP, I don't recall doing any song assignments. We learned about the appropriate ways to approach song interpretation but we didn't make song presentations to each other. We were taught that interpreting songs is appropriate if vocalized songs are part of the event that deaf people are attending, of course.

At an interpreter workshop that I attended that was completely about interpreting songs, one point right at the beginning was emphasized. There are two categories of signing songs, and they should be kept separate. One is a hearing person interpreting the song for a deaf audience so they can be included in the event. The second is performance signing, usually done by a deaf signer giving a creative rendition of a song. The audience can be hearing and deaf. (There is no legitimate third category of hearing signers performing for hearing-only non-signing audiences.)

I've attended (and graduated) from my ITP, attended numerous interpreter workshops, and attended other ASL classes as an observer, and I've never seen an emphasis on teaching ASL via using songs. Nope. We were taught that you need to have a really firm grip on the language before you attempt interpreting songs.

The fact that the people you mention are using English-heavy PSE for their songs tells me that they don't even have a grasp on the concept of song signing.

Please tell me that they don't fingerspell anything during the songs. :Ohno:
 

Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
Ive posted these somewhere on here before, but are awesome
"How Great Is Our God" Signing (ASL) - YouTube....
Haven't had time to look at all the links yet but I wouldn't call this one ASL.

I was also intrigued by the signer's comments. He's been signing songs for five years at his church but he said he can't hold a conversation with a deaf person! And he thinks that's funny!

"Actually Ive Been Signing (in the church) For About Over 5 Years I Think?

I Can Sign To Different Songs, But I Cant Have A Convo. With Someone...lol

Ardie808"


:jaw:

That tells me, learning songs doesn't aid fluency.
 

Devyn231

New Member
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This is a great thread for me. Before I took classes I spent a lot of time trying to learn some songs with youtube & asl dictionaries. Very difficult! And probably not the best idea lol! One positive note, i used many signs over & over, allowing me to simply learn a few signs, nothing more :)
 

BecLak

Well-Known Member
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Reba said:
Ive posted these somewhere on here before, but are awesome
"How Great Is Our God" Signing (ASL) - YouTube....
Haven't had time to look at all the links yet but I wouldn't call this one ASL.

I was also intrigued by the signer's comments. He's been signing songs for five years at his church but he said he can't hold a conversation with a deaf person! And he thinks that's funny!

"Actually Ive Been Signing (in the church) For About Over 5 Years I Think?

I Can Sign To Different Songs, But I Cant Have A Convo. With Someone...lol

Ardie808"


:jaw:

That tells me, learning songs doesn't aid fluency.

That's what I discovered also. It appears that only about 1 in 10 signed songs on the Internet are actually done by fluent signers :shock: even that ratio doesn't do it justice.
I will go with sticking close to the Deafies in the group. It is interesting though how easy it was to distinguish the difference.
 

Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
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That's what I discovered also. It appears that only about 1 in 10 signed songs on the Internet are actually done by fluent signers :shock: even that ratio doesn't do it justice.
I will go with sticking close to the Deafies in the group. It is interesting though how easy it was to distinguish the difference.
If anything, I would recommend developing your ASL story-telling skills. That will be a greater benefit to you, and more enjoyable for your viewers. :)
 

BecLak

Well-Known Member
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Reba said:
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That's what I discovered also. It appears that only about 1 in 10 signed songs on the Internet are actually done by fluent signers :shock: even that ratio doesn't do it justice.
I will go with sticking close to the Deafies in the group. It is interesting though how easy it was to distinguish the difference.
If anything, I would recommend developing your ASL story-telling skills. That will be a greater benefit to you, and more enjoyable for your viewers. :)

Good idea - any tips? Like I mentioned my signing is very PSE-like at the moment :eek: I am guessing by what you are saying, that my confidence will grow the more I sign, and that grammar will eventually correct itself?
 

Reba

Retired Terp
Premium Member
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Good idea - any tips? Like I mentioned my signing is very PSE-like at the moment :eek: I am guessing by what you are saying, that my confidence will grow the more I sign, and that grammar will eventually correct itself?
Have you learned how to use classifiers and role shifting? Those are important for story telling.
 

BecLak

Well-Known Member
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Reba said:
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Good idea - any tips? Like I mentioned my signing is very PSE-like at the moment :eek: I am guessing by what you are saying, that my confidence will grow the more I sign, and that grammar will eventually correct itself?
Have you learned how to use classifiers and role shifting? Those are important for story telling.

I have observed the use of them in DVDs I own, of children's stories in Auslan. One of my Deafie friends was recounting a tragic news story the other day. I was able to comprehend everything she was signing. Now that you've mentioned classifiers and role-shifting, I will re-watch the DVDs with that in mind and work on my own story-telling. I still haven't forgotten the video-clip I promised Botti. I will work on getting a video together as soon as I can get one of my kids to show me how (only if....lol!) In the meantime I will do my 'homework' - Thanks Reba :)
 
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