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You are HERE >>  Languages : American Sign Language (ASL) and Signed English (SE)
American Sign Language (ASL) for the Deaf  Lesson 3b
By Elaine Ernst Schneider
March 12, 2001

American Sign language (ASL) relies heavily on descriptive signs to indicate which specific person is being talked about.  This includes eye and hair color. Let’s learn these signs:

A.S.L. signing the word 'eye'
Signing the word 'hair'


- use finger spelling



"B" hand on brow
"B" hand
"R" hand
how to sign the word 'blue' in A.S.L.


How to sign the word 'green'

"G" hand



Sign Description of Action
black Touch the index-finger side of a right "d" hand to the forehead. Then move it across the forehead, (just above the eyebrows) in a left to right motion.

blue Slight shake a right "B" hand as you hold it to the right of the body.

brown Draw a right "b" hand across the right cheek, starting at the right side of the nose and ending at the bottom of the mouth.

eyes Point to eyes with right hand.

green Slightly shake a right "g" hand.

hair Using the index finger and thumb of the right hand, grasp a lock of hair.

red Touch a right "d" hand to the lips, glancing the top and then the bottom lip in a downward motion.

white Touch all fingertips and thumb of an open and slightly curved right hand to the chest. Move the hand forward, while closing it so that the fingertips touch about eight inches in front of the chest.

Make a family mobile. Choose family photos or cut out pictures from magazines that represent family members. Punch a hole in the top of each picture and attach pictures to a coat hanger using yarn. Prepare a description of each family member using the ASL sign from this lesson. For example: Mother has blue eyes. Father has black hair. 

Return to Lesson 3a

To review your ASL alphabet, A - L    Click here
To review your ASL alphabet, M - Z   Click here

Continue on to Lesson 4 - Numbers


Submitted by:  © Elaine Ernst Schneider  is a freelance writer and a teacher. She has been writing since high school and has published articles, songs, and children's work. Presently, Elaine is a curriculum author for Group Publishing and also writes the City Songs column for ezine.  Send your feedback to Elaine
 Our son is profoundly deaf and as a family we use ASL.  I've enjoyed looking over your site and will suggest it to those interested in learning sign language.  I do have one suggestion and it may be a local thing but for blonde the sign used in our area is touching the hair and then sign yellow.  Thank you for the hard work and dedication needed to put together a site such as this one. 
   Sincerely, Diana S  (May, 2002)
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