Deaf Not Different


Alright so a while back I posted this about HAPenPals, where other d/Deaf/HOH will meet people and send little things to each other (letters, postcards, email… whatever it is). So if you’re interested in joining on in… give me a message with where you are (country wise) if you want to do national, international, anything specific to know (You only want Sign Language users, Deaf, deaf, HoH??) and anything else!

Once there is a list I’m thinking of either doing a random mash up, or a tumblr (as someone suggested and I’m sorry I forgot who you were… url wise) where we can all post stuff connected to the Pen Pal Thing. I wanted to do a FB group about it but not sure if people have FB…


Here in Silence - a short film written and directed by Jake Willis. 

It won Best Foreign Film at Deaffest UK. Set in Melbourne.

Fingerspelling tips - Auslan

So I was creeping about on the sign language tag and I found this [link] which is about ASL, but pretty well applies to Auslan so you should check it out! Also, I think the dot point that says “Don’t panic” is really good! For reals, if I panic everything just blurs past and no matter how many times I ask for a repeat I just get more flustered and less likely to understand (and then I finally get it and feel like a total muffin.)

So, anyway, it made me think of all the amazing advice I’ve been given about fingerspelling and I am putting it here both to share and to remind myself. Bear in mind I am a student and not AT ALL fluent or very good at fingerspelling, but I am working on it and a lot of this advice is from my teachers.

So here you go!

  • Learn to recognise common letter combinations/word endings eg. -ING -ION -IOUS CH -CK TH etc.
  • When you know that a word doesn’t have a sign and is commonly fingerspelled try to remember that. I keep a list of words that are usually fingerspelled, so I can practise them.
  • Watch out for the letter C. I’m not even joking about this, I miss the letter C constantly because it’s often at the start before you realise a word is being fingerspelled/also it is the only letter that is one handed and it breaks my brain.
  • If you know that you are having a bad day for fingerspelling reception, try to get a good angle to look at the other person’s hands, by which I mean try to stand on a slight angle to them on the side of their dominant hand (Does that make sense? I mean so that you can see more of their supporting hand’s palm), which means there is less chance you’ll mix up V M N and L because their supporting hand isn’t blocking your view.
  • Practise vowels constantly!
  • Fingerspell the alphabet backward.
  • Film yourself or a (willing) friend fingerspelling and watch it.
  • When you are on trains fingerspell all of the stations as you pass them.

That’s all I can think of for now… 

Oh and:

  • Call me and be like “Hey Extendedmetaphor, wanna do some fingerspelling practise?” cause I’ll be like “Yes, yes I do.” Or I’ll be like “How did you get my number, also it’s three in the morning?”


  • S and U! Look at them! They look the same sometimes! Why is this?! Oh god… Practice both seeing the difference between them and signing the transition S to U and U to S.

sorry this isn’t very clear, making auslan videos on my iPhone has been proving pretty unsuccessful.

Translation: Hi, for people who don’t know me, my name is Kristy, I live in Queensland Australia, and I’m learning Auslan with DSQ. I’m a little sad today because tonight is my last Auslan class. I hope maybe I can make new friends on tumblr to practice with. I really want more Auslan friends, so maybe you can ask me questions, or something, doesn’t matter what. I really hope to talk to you soon!


Australian comedian Adam Hills talks about sign language
Oceania - Sign Language - LibGuides at Gallaudet University Library
A collection of commonly-asked questions about sign languages, particularly American Sign Language.
By Sarah Hamrick, Laura Jacobi, Patrick Oberholtzer, Elizabeth Henry, Jamie Smith


American Samoa

  • American Sign Language


  • Australian Sign Language (derived from British Sign Language, with influences from American Sign Language and Irish Sign Language.)
  • “Australasian Sign Language” is an attempt to merge Australian Sign Language and New Zealand Sign Language into one common sign language.
  • Cued Speech (especially in Catholic schools for the deaf)
  • Australian Aborigines Sign Language
  • Aranda (or Arunta or Arrente) Sign Language
  • Dieri Sign Language
  • Djingili Sign Language
  • Jaralde Sign Language
  • Kaititj/Akitiri Sign Language
  • Manjiljarra Sign Language
  • Mudbura Sign Language
  • Murngin Sign Language
  • Ngada Sign Language
  • Torres Straits Islander Sign Language
  • Walpari [or Walpiri or Walbiri] Sign Language
  • Warumungu [or Warramunga] Sign Language
  • Western Desert Sign Language (Yurira Watjalku)
  • Worora Kinship Sign Language


  • Fiji Sign Language

New Zealand

  • New Zealand Sign Language
  • “Australasian Sign Language” is an attempt to merge Australian Sign Language and New Zealand Sign Language into one common sign language.

Samoa Islands

  • Samoan Sign Language (totally different from the American Sign Language used in neighboring American Samoa)

Solomon Islands: Rennell Island

  • Rennellese Sign Language

Captioned video of a deaf man demonstrating his deaf dog’s comprehension of Auslan.

Omg, the announcement came through everyone!!

[link] there will be a Diploma of Auslan as of July this year!!!


It still sucks because the teachers who lost their jobs at Kangan still lose their jobs, but in the very least this is a big win for the Deaf community, because it means future interpreters!


Pink - Dear Mr President in Auslan (Australian Sign Language) - [Dan Jarvis]