The Video Dictionary of ASL Signs Review

Trilingual Triumph: ASL, English and Spanish

Video Review by Chris Wixtrom     © 1999

The Video Dictionary of ASL Signs
VHS (two videotapes, 2 hr each, and a booklet)
$75.00 (Item #12)

Available from:
Multi-Media Evangelism Inc., 1335 S.Providence Road, Richmond, VA 23236
804.276.9083 (voice/tty);  804.674.5611 (FAX 24 hours)
E-mail: 75053.232@compuserve.com;  URL: http://www.multimediaevangelism.org

Ray Bearden, hearing son of Deaf parents, has the credentials to sign this set. On these marathon videos (four hours, total) he presents 2,849 individual signs. The signs are shown from front and side views simultaneously, as the words are spoken. Related English captions are at the lower edge of the screen. If the Spanish-English edition is chosen, all three languages appear. Students may follow along with the word list in the accompanying booklet, which is available in English-only and English/Spanish versions.

Benefits of the set include the clear, dual-perspective sign demonstrations, and the large number of vocabulary items. Those who do not have a computer for CD-ROM sign dictionaries will appreciate the chance to study by video. Using the booklet and the VCR buttons, it is easy to find the right word. Although the signs are presented very quickly, the "pause" and "rewind" options allow learning at a comfortable pace. Despite the tedium of watching sign after sign - with no sentences to make sense of them - it must be acknowledged that vocabulary expansion is a necessary part of learning any language. Thus, this video dictionary may take its place as an important part of a home, school, workplace, or church library of ASL resources.

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