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ASL Grammar: 5 Parameters

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by

Jeana Stump

on 9 April 2014

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Transcript of ASL Grammar: 5 Parameters

ASL Grammar: 5 Parameters
Movement
Movements in your signs are also important. You need to show the right movement for someone to understand what you are trying to sign to them. For example, to say 'Yellow' you make a 'Y' with your hand and move you hand in a rocking motion to show 'Yellow'. If that rocking motion was not shown, then the signer would only be showing the letter 'Y' from the alphabet instead of the color.
Palm Orientation
Each palm orientation is different than each other.
Some signs are important to have a certain palm orientation. Some signs require your palm to be facing the person you are signing to , and others require you to face your palm to yourself, or to the side, depending on the word and the given sign for that specific word, or phrase.
5 Parameters
Handshapes
Using certain handshapes while communicating through ASL is important. It shows certain meaning to certain words. For example you can have two signs that are similar, but one involves a flat hand while the other involves a curved hand. You wouldn't know the difference if it weren't for the certain handshapes. Some handshapes can help you show a certain meaning to a certain sign.
Location
Location is key to some signs. To sign 'Summer' your sign is the same for 'Ugly' and for 'Dry'. The only difference for those signs is the location of each sign. 'Summer' is placed on your forehead, 'Ugly' is placed under your nose, and 'Dry' is located under your chin. If you mixed up those locations, or didn't have a specific location for those three words, they would all be the same, and no one would know which one you wanted to use.
The movement for 'Yellow' is different than just showing the letter 'Y'
Non-Manual Markers
Facial expressions show meanings even more than just using the signs. Making a happier face while signing 'Happy' shows more that 'Happy' is what you are meaning by the sign. The same thing goes for 'Sad' or 'Surprised'. It works for every emotion.
The 5 parameters are very important to the contribution to ASL. It gives your signing more meaning and more emotion.

The 5 parameters are handshapes, motion, palm orientation, location and non-maunal markers.
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