Sign Language Product

Rocket American Sign Language Course

Believe it or not, learning sign language does NOT have to be an impossible dream! You do not have to wish you could learn sign language so that you can communicate with deaf loved ones or help people that are close to you. Learning sign language is very often frustrating and infuriating; it is not like learning any other language, because there is no speaking involved in it. It is a very new experience to those who have tried it before. However, with Rocket American Sign Language you will gain access to a full online course that gives you the education that you need in order to have a really great and useful time learning American Sign Language. You will be able to learn it in just a few minutes per day! You don't need to spend hours learning it; you will get a full education in just a few minutes per day!

Rocket American Sign Language Course Summary

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Primates and Sign Language

A contemporary example of the problem of measurement can be provided with the case of Washoe, the first chimpanzee to be taught sign language. Because of physical inability to vocalize human speech, chimpanzees were taught sign language as a mode of communication with humans. Soon Washoe and another signing chimpanzee, Nim Chimsky, were reported to have spontaneously created novel sentences through their signing. For example, Washoe was reported to have signed the combination water and bird after seeing a swan. Being a novel combination of signs, the trainers of Washoe explained the behavior as creative insight. Unfortunately, Washoe had also shown repeated signing of meaningless combinations, leading to the conclusion that a significant pairing of signs would eventually appear not because of the primate's cognitive reasoning but as a result of chance. Inevitably, these early attempts to demonstrate animal intelligence were widely discredited as exaggeration or self-delusion on the...

American Sign Language Among Primates

To obtain an understanding of their evolutionary roots, human beings have turned to the great apes, especially chimpanzees, because they are humans' closest living relatives, sharing as much as 98 percent of identical genetic material. Many attempts have been made to teach apes to learn language. Early attempts to raise apes along with human babies in the hope that these human-reared apes would learn to speak human language ended in failure, but researchers came to realize that apes do not have the vocal structure necessary for producing human speech sounds. Enlightened by the Braille system of writing for the blind and sign language for the deaf, researchers began to employ nonverbal symbolic systems, including plastic chips (David Pre-mack's chimp Sarah), computer lexigrams (Duane Rumbaugh's chimp Lana), and American Sign Language (ASL). This line of research has yielded interesting results. Allen and Beatrice Gardner's chimp Washoe acquired ASL, and, moreover, she began to combine...

Suggested Reading

Brain and language A perspective from sign language. Neuron 1998,21 275-278. Cooke B, Hegstrom CD, Villenueve LS, Breedlove SM. Sexual differentiation of the vertebrate brain Principles and mechanisms. Front Neuroendocr 1998,19 323-362. Dijk D-J, Duffy JF. Circadian regulation of human sleep and age-related changes in its timing, consolidation and EEG characteristics. Ann Med 1999,31 130-140. Elmquist JK, Elias CF, Saper CB. From lesions to leptin Hypothalamic control of food intake and body weight. Neuron 1999,22 221-232. Gazzaniga MS. The split brain revisited.

Gorilla Language and Intelligence

The mental capacity of gorillas was long thought inferior to chimpanzees. Their intelligence is still being explored and testing is changing experimenters' opinions. Different techniques are needed to train gorillas, who are not as curious as chimpanzees. Trained correctly, gorillas have better memories and problem-solving skills than chimpanzees. They also discriminate between geometric shapes better. In addition, it is reported that they are most likely to perform tasks associated with intelligence out of interest, not for rewards. In exploration of communication via American Sign Language (ASL), some gorillas have mastered over one hundred words.

Humans and Other Primates

Scientific understanding of human behavior and other aspects of human biology is similarly enhanced by studies of other primates. Studies of sign language among apes, for example, have greatly increased the understanding of human language and the ways in which it is learned. Both gorillas and chimpanzees have successfully been taught American Sign Language (ASL), a gesture-language commonly used by deaf people. Many researchers who have worked with these apes believe that they show true language skills in their use of ASL, although some linguists disagree. Apes who use sign language can converse about past, present, and future events, faraway places, hypothetical ( what if ) situations, pictures in books, and individual preferences. These apes apparently can use language to lie, to play games or make puns, or to create definitions, such as a banana is a long yellow fruit that tastes better than grapes.

Protolanguage Theory

In addition to the supportive results of computer simulations, other empirical evidence came from studies involving primates and human children. In Leavens and Hopkins's study, 115 chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) in captivity (aged three to fifty-six years), without any explicit training whatsoever, commonly employed gaze alterations and a pointing gesture in face-to-face communicative interactions with humans and among themselves. This demonstrated the presence of communicative intent and gestural precursors of language among humans' closest relatives, chimpanzees. The bonobo (Pan paniscus) Kanzi understands spoken English sentences and knows how to use human-designated lexigrams to announce his intention, all through laissez-faire learning without explicit teaching. The chimpanzee Washoe spontaneously taught her acquired American Sign Language (ASL) to her adopted son Loulis. Human babies are like chimpanzees in many ways. As McCrone describes it, human infants are born with the...

Diet and Social Life

It is believed that this development necessitated far more intensive child care and a closer bond between the parents, which nature then enforced by increasing the mutual sexual attraction of the parents through anatomical changes (large breasts and nonseasonal sexual receptiveness), and mental stimuli (an intense partner bond and monogamy). Greater infant dependency may also have stimulated a division of labor short-range food collecting, rearing, and teaching of the children being performed by women, and longdistance collecting, scavenging, hunting, and fighting by men. More complex social interaction during group living, hunting, and child care also led to the development of sign language and the first forms of speech. With greater handling skills, and an increasingly shared knowledge about hunting, food

Stria Medullaris

Limbic System Rage And Placidity

In accordance with these findings, anatomic studies show that areas in the temporal lobe concerned with language ability, including Wernicke's area, are anatomically larger in the left hemisphere than in the right in a majority of humans, and this is seen even prenatally. Corroborative evidence of language ability in the left hemisphere is shown in persons who have had a stroke, where aphasias are most severe if the damage is on the left side of the brain. Analysis of people who are deaf who communicated by sign language prior to a stroke has shown that sign language is also a left-hemisphere function. These patients show the same kinds of grammatical and syntactical errors in their signing following a left-hemisphere stroke as do speakers.