New ASL sign name!




~ by Tar2006 on January 23, 2008.

19 Responses to “New ASL sign name!”

  1. It’s not really new idea. I have deaf family and they are doing it very unique ways for years. It could be hobby, their body language, hair style, personality, attitude, etc.

    Also, it depends where you live — if you live in culture-rich area, you will see many unique name-sign than other area.


  2. I like your old ASL sign name “T” from your own birth! Sorry! Same thing with my Deaf son since he was BORN, just stick with his old ASL sign name. Someone did tried to change my Deaf son’s ASL name with new sign name. We, the family do NOT LIKE anyone else invented different sign name for my Deaf son! Too bad for other people who tried to destroy my Deaf son’s old ASL sign name from his own birth ASL sign name! Forget it!! Sorry, we, the new Deaf parents caught one interpreter who caught my Deaf son came out of my body and saw my Deaf son did signed his name first from the birthing labor room while I was out of breath!!! My Deaf son did signed his own name first when he came out of my body!

  3. When I went to Deaf school for first time (6-7 yrs. old), supervisor gave me that sign “C” on right jaw until I was about 14-15 yrs old, I played basketball and there was another girl that her sign name “C” on chin. We were confused when we were called by coach so many times so I decided to tell coach, just call me CJ on jaw because my hearing family calls me full name (name and middle name) so it would be easier to ease confusion. After that, it became me quickly and I love that sign because it is unique. When I had my first baby, her intial first name was “C”, too even her middle name was J, too. Her father’s name was “C”, too and sign name “C” om air. It took a few days to decide sign name for our daughter and her sign name is mixed of her parents’ sign names “CJ” in air..something different from common sign names. Then we had second baby–son…we did sign his name “Z” in air for short time until I noticed everyone saying ahhh oohh cute dimple on his cheek for awhile then I decided to change his sign name Z on dimple (identify his dimple on cheek) and he still has dimple since birth! It is really up to Deaf parents with sign names (of course) but with Deaf children of hearing parents, school or students would would make up signs for them or they never heard of Deaf world/college until they go to Deaf college, etc–they would make up signs on their own. Do you notice that???

  4. I love your new sign name! It’s perfect! I taught ASL class and explained the same way about creating their name sign, too. It’s only up to them if they want to use their name in common places or to be creative in a sign.

  5. Most of my ASL students chose to be creative with their name signs.

  6. Yes, im an asl student. My friends and I have such experience

  7. Disagree w/you..
    sorry.. since born and ask for sign name..that is it.. stick forever.. don’t make everyone confused who id really person.

    Nice your offer!

  8. It seems that in the USA we tend to use alphabet name-signs, like A on the head or on the shoulder, M on the chest or K on the chin.

    In many foreign countries, sign names are more like what you suggest, based on a feature of the person or a hobby.

    I am stuck with my D name sign, but my children (who have a foreign-born father) are sign-named (glossed as) Bunny, Stars-before-the-eyes and Spirit-on-the-back-of-the hand.

    Tar, you rock! Spread the idea!

  9. I’m seriously considering a new sign name for myself. I had to tell people here at Gally that I don’t have one. Here is an idea. Make a handshape of O and sign like a snake. Why? Because one day years ago, I was reading in the van and my old deaf pastor was driving. I was in the front passenger chair.

    He reached over to me and tapped me. He said, “Hey, you know you are called a bookworm, right?”

    I said, “Yes…”

    “Well, no more! You should be called a booksnake! Because the van go bumpy on the road but you stubbornly read!”

    I chuckled at his witty remarks. Now I realize that it can be good story after I give my sign name if people are curious. What do you think?

  10. I think keep both??? Use your old signs for your friends that KNOWS you.
    New sign for people that don’t know you, new to us, like DeafRead, use that NEW sign??

    Mine is the same, for years, “B” – for sign “B” with “hit” (Softball, as I’ve played for YEARS).

  11. I recommend The Book of Name Signs: Naming in American Sign Language by Samuel Supalla. It’s an interesting little book on name signs with concepts about them I wasn’t aware of before. One such concept is that essentially handshape on “traditional” specific locations around body are “proper names” such as Frank, William etc. Making up obscure or some unusual name signs are unconsciously seen as “silly” and may not be taken as seriously.

    It IS easier to take seriously someone named Frank rather than a Frankie or Frankie-boy eh?

    CJ- Supalla mentions the very same thing you did when two persons with the name signs show up in a social setting. You followed pretty proper ASL rules, cool..

  12. PS: Great idea for Oscar – you got it! Will use your name around for “O” as snake sign 🙂

  13. hi, I am a newbie here… My name already had changed when I moved to USA. I won’t let it changing again. I aleady had my orginal name by my homeland schoolmates which I disliked to be called. (It was a part of insulting like a mouse teeth naming for my front misshaped teeth. That’s what my deaf people in the country, always call another deaf person like crippled leg, arm or bad facisal a name, or for an example “moneky mouth sign”. It is too personalize insulting). I told some of my american friends that I have no name in the ASL.. They gave me a new name signing “Y” as “yoyo” or “oic” to fit my character. One problem is that if my name is changed again, it won’t familiar to my homeland or american friends in conversation. Once a person gets an orgnial name by parents or friends giving. Leave names alone, you should know the ASL rules are a RULE!.
    Thank you.


  14. Thank you everyone for sharing their opinion! =-)
    Terri Watts, I totally understand that you disagreed with me.

    I could like you to make vlog and explain your reason why you disagreed? Hmmm.. =-)

    Good story… Peep!!! I’m sure that I learned something new from you guys..

  15. Hi i am learing asl in my school and we have deaf kids there and that is how they came up with my sign name. the person that gave it to me said that i make him laugh and my name starts with a “B” so that is how he meade mine. but that is a good ideal.

  16. Creative sign names are so interesting!

    But aren’t there specific grammatical rules to follow?

    This is why I ask:

    A friend of mine was given a sign name by her boyfriend and the sign was very similar to any of the standard forms you show in your vlog (it is the “m” hand-shape curling down from the forehead). However, when our ASL professor saw it she told us it wasn’t correct. We asked why, but we didn’t get a clear answer. I have also browsed a book on the topic, but that did not provide any information that I didn’t already know. And when I show other people the sign they say it looks fine.

    So, are there rules for sign names that must be followed or not?


  17. I like your idea but I would rather not change my sign name. It would be good for a person who doesn’t have their sign name. By the way, I always love listen your opinion ! Good Job, T!

  18. NOT new!!! For 20+ years I have worked in and around D/HH who ‘invent’ sign names from personal preferences or hobbies. You see it more with teens (typical of age for trying new things). By the time they are adults, they have settled on one sign name. General rule of thumb is to avoid areas on the body that tend to be used for derrogatory signs or could be confused for something derrogatory. Other than that, no binding rules.

  19. Good day!,

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