HCN News & Notes

Willie Ross School for the Deaf Offering American Sign Language Classes Starting in February

LONGMEADOW — Willie Ross School for the Deaf (WRSD) is offering American Sign Language classes beginning Tuesday, Feb. 7 at the school’s Longmeadow campus at 32 Norway St. Classes will be held once a week on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8 p.m., and will run for 14 weeks through May 23.

All of the class levels begin on Feb. 7, and during the first class, WRSD teaching staff will assess participants’ fluency to determine the best level placement. To register, visit www.wrsdeaf.org/american-sign-language-classes.

The Level 1A beginner course is for students who have no previous experience in sign language or finger spelling. Students will learn the manual alphabet and will learn to combine words to form simple sentences. The Level 1B course will focus on expanding basic vocabulary and conversation skills.

The Level 2A intermediate course will focus on further expanding vocabulary and conversation skills, and the 2B course is designed for students who possess a strong basic sign-language vocabulary and fluency in expressive and receptive communication.

The Level 3 course is the most advanced course, designed to further build on expressive and receptive communication.

Registration costs $150, and books are available for rental ($10) or purchase ($85). Certificates of completion will be issued based upon three or fewer absences. Due to school holidays, there are no classes on Feb. 21 or April 18. To learn more, visit www.wrsdeaf.org/american-sign-language-classes.

WRSD is also offering a free sign-language course for parents and guardians of deaf a hard-of-hearing students on Wednesday evenings. The course will also utilize a Spanish translator for Spanish-speaking families. For more information, contact Aubrey Jazwierski, coordinator of Student and Administrative Services, at ajazwierski@wrsdeaf.org or (413) 567-0374.

All WRSD sign-language courses use the Signing Naturally curriculum. The Level 1A course uses units 1-3, Level 1B units 4-6, Level 2A units 7-8, Level 2B units 9-10, and Level 3 units 11-12.