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The Benefits of Learning American Sign Language (ASL) for Kids

The Benefits of Learning American Sign Language (ASL) for Kids

By Sylvia

March 15th, 2023

Looking for a great second language choice for your kids to learn? In previous articles, we addressed the many benefits of multilingualism, especially when starting at an early age. When thinking of a foreign language, some popular ones that come to mind are Spanish, French, and Chinese - all of which we have classes for here at RLS! One language that is often overlooked, is American Sign Language (ASL), and with the recent rollout of our ASL Class, we wanted to go over why this language could be a great second language choice for your kids to learn.

Let's look at some statistics first. ASL is the 3rd most spoken language in the United States and the 4th most popular foreign language studied at colleges and universities. There are approximately 37 million hard-of-hearing and deaf people in the U.S., many of whom use ASL. By learning this language, your kid is now able to communicate with 17% more of the population than before. There is also a high demand for American Sign Language interpreters nationwide. And regardless of career choice, many workplaces would appreciate the value of someone adept in this language. So, adding sign language to your student's portfolio can certainly open up many doors for your kid, academically and career-wise.

American Sign Language relies heavily on hand, face, and body movements, as well as facial expressions. As such, it can help kids with building and developing:

  • Fine motor skills
  • Hands-eye coordination
  • Visual-spatial intelligence
  • Self-awareness
  • Self-esteem
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Creativity and Expression
  • Cognitive Flexibility
  • Critical Thinking
  • Problem-Solving
  • Attention Span

Finally, while learning any foreign language involves exposure to different cultures, ASL is heavily manifested into the Deaf culture making them inseparable, and as such a good American Sign Language class delves into understanding the social beliefs, history, values and traditions of the Deaf community, to help increase cultural sensitivity and awareness.

Learning American Sign Language can prove to be fun and rewarding (we guarantee!) for your kids. Our new ASL Class is appropriate for kids of all ages and included free with Homeschool Pro and Afterschool Plus. So hopefully, you'll consider American Sign Language as part of your kids' curriculum, and watch them shine.