Setting a higher standard

K-12 ASL Content Standards

What to Teach and When to Teach

The K-12 ASL Content Standards help our K-12 Deaf Education teachers nationwide to learn and promote the essential skills that are foundational to learning and understanding ASL, including how to plan for ASL instruction for deaf and hard of hearing students.

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Five Anchor Standards

The Anchor Standards set the foundation for the Standards and describe the general expectations of K-12 students learning ASL as a first language. 

Viewing Standards

The Viewing Standards help ensure students gain adequate exposure to various texts and tasks.

As students advance through the grades, they’ll be introduced to increasingly complex texts with the expectation of meeting each year’s grade-level standards and retaining or further developing the skills and understanding mastered in preceding grades.

Published Signing Standards

The Published Signing Standards help ensure students gain mastery of a range of skills and applications in developing published ASL.

This includes developing students’ understanding and working knowledge on text types and purposes, producing published signing, and researching to build and present knowledge.

Students should demonstrate increasing sophistication in all aspects of linguistic expression, from vocabulary and syntax to the development and organization of ideas.

The expected growth in students’ published signing ability is seen in the Five Anchor Standards and the collection of annotated student-published signed samples.

Discourse and Presentation Standards

The Discourse and Presentation Standards focus on fostering students’ ability to effectively present knowledge and ideas through findings and supporting evidence appropriate to the task, purpose, and audience.

These standards include preparation for and participation in a range of conversations and collaborations with different audiences.

Students will participate in a range of conversations and collaborations with different audiences. Through the strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data, students develop an appropriate linguistic register for presenting and analyzing their own work and the work of others.

Language Standards

The Language Standards develop students’ understanding and working knowledge of the structures that define ASL.

In addition, these standards foster student knowledge of standard ASL grammar, usage, and mechanics while facilitating different ways to use language.

Fingerspelling Standards

The Fingerspelling Standards offer a yearly focus to foster students’ understanding and knowledge of fingerspelling.

These standards are designed for students to expand their perception of fingerspelling in its initialized and lexicalized forms to promote vocabulary acquisition and use of fingerspelling in isolation and in context.