All Eyes on the Signs

Amber Havard, Reporter

Every language taught at Clear Lake has an honor society and an accompanying club, including its only unspoken language, American Sign Language.

ASL is a language that uses only body movements for speech so that deaf, mute, and hard of hearing people can communicate.

Honor societies and clubs usually use most of their time and resources to spread awareness of their club and language. ASL is no different.

“We usually do a lot of deaf outreaches, but because of COVID we’ve been mostly doing stuff around the school,”  the club sponsor and an ASL teacher, Ms. Boyce, said.

It’s important to teach ASL and bring awareness to it because unlike most other languages taught at CLHS, it has immediate use in the United States. Many within the US only speak ASL and it’s important to include them.

“You could be working at Taco Bell and a deaf customer walks up to you,” Ms. Boyce said, “It [ASL] would be immediately applicable to you, you wouldn’t have to leave the country.”

The club and honor society are almost completely student led meaning the students handle almost all planning and organization.

“The students do everything,” Ms. Boyce said. “They decide the outreach, they decide what goes on the T-Shirts, they pick how we fundraise.”

The club and honor society hold several fundraising events. From the usual bake sales and shirts to the unique showcases where ASL students will show off their abilities and prowess.

“We do some fundraising; we typically do showcases and bake sales.” Ms. Boyce said.

To get involved with ASL, joining the class is highly encouraged. However, club membership is open to anyone.

“You have to be in ASL to join the honor society, but anyone can join the club,” Ms. Boyce said.

People both in and out of ASL are encouraged to join the club to spread awareness of Sign Language and Deaf culture.

American Sign Language is a highly unique and often misunderstood language.

You could help change preconceived notions of Sign Language and Deaf culture by pitching in to a student led club today.