Thank you for your interest in The Sign Language Center. Our goal is to combine the teaching of a language with an understanding of the culture it comes from. We believe this enriches the learning experience and allows the acquisition of language to be easy and fun.
In the past forty years, there has been a surge of research analyzing American Sign Language (ASL) linguistically. These studies provide evidence that ASL meets the criteria of being a “true” language with grammatical and syntactical rules. This research has increased interest and awareness concerning the deaf community and the Deaf culture.
Deaf culture is the celebration of pride in the history and the traditions of the community. Knowledge of American Sign Language is what truly holds the community together and how social and cultural identity is passed down from generation to generation. Social mores and rules are defined and created through the use of visual language. For example, eye contact and body language are key factors in effective communication.
The Sign Language Center was established in order to bridge the communication gap between the deaf and hearing worlds. As the only deaf-owned and operated school in Manhattan we have a unique perspective on how to accomplish this task. ASL Level 1 is offered for first time students with classes ranging up to conversational level. We also teach classes/workshops in culture, history and linguistics in order to encourage a deeper knowledge and appreciation of Deaf culture. Our ASL instructors are Deaf individuals that learned ASL as a first language.