Category Archives: Learn Auslan Online

Learn Auslan – Nature

These Auslan signs will help you communicate about gardening, nature and the great outdoors:

  • nature
  • flower
  • garden
  • plant
  • tree
  • grow
  • seed
  • watering
  • grass
  • environment
  • sustainable
  • stars
  • moon

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Future Girl would make a good Christmas gift for a creative or environmentally minder reader

Image: A book cover titled Future Girl by Asphyxia. It shows a girl with long, black, wavy hair. She wears a gray sleeveless top and holds a magenta pencil and paint brush in her fist, with a light blue paint dripping from the brush. She has large black cross over her right ear. Her eyes are green and her lips red. The background is of green, brown and teale textured paint, with drawings of buildings in black. On the right is a review by Drisana Levitzke-Gray, Young Australian of the Year 2015, which says, ‘Future Girl is a must-read for Deaf people, who will identify with Piper, and for those who are hearing, to gain an understanding of what it’s like to be Deaf.’ Below the review is the text, ‘The art journal of 16-year-old Piper, this is a visual extravaganza of text, paint, collage and drawings, woven into a deeply engaging coming-of-age story, set in near future Melbourne as it lurches towards environmental catastrophe.’ Beneath that is the logo of the publishers, Allen and Unwin, and text, ‘Get your copy at http://www.asphyxia.com.au’.

If you like my posts about Deafness, or enjoy my free Auslan course, you will love my book, Future Girl, which is the art journal of 16-year-old Piper as she explores her identity as a Deaf teenager in near future Melbourne. The book is packed full of my artwork – 384 pages of art! It’s ideal for anyone who is interested in the environment, food growing, Deafness, sign language, art journaling and art. The book has won numerous awards and is now set to become a TV series.

I found writing about Deaf experience challenging, because Deafness was such an ordinary part of my existence that I rarely thought about it. I began jotting down my daily Deaf encounters – the little annoyances, confusing moments, benefits, the irritating things people say, and the complex feelings that arise when someone has tried to provide access but missed the mark.

I began to articulate aspects of Deafness I had never seen described before. For example, a Deaf dilemma: if I’m standing with a group of hearing people who are laughing, but I have no idea what they are laughing about, should I laugh along to be friendly (and if you do, are you somehow ‘lying’ about having understood?), or stand there with a stony face even though it could seem rude and unfriendly?

Image: Artwork of a girl with black hair cut in a bob, standing on the right. She has big, wide blue eyes and a little blush on her cheeks, with smoky make up smeared under her eyes and lips painted dark red. She wears a long-sleeved pink dress with a white collar. The background is grungy black, grey and teal colours. Black text at her right reads, ‘Deaf dilemma: When people are laughing and I don’t understand, I have to choose. Do I remain stony-faced, with spoil-sport energy? Or do I laugh along, even though it’s false?’ Black text beneath this reads, ‘www.asphyxia.com.au’.

I realised everyday I was dealing with difficult decisions like this, but I have never stopped and thought about how I really wanted to respond! Through writing Future Girl, I became aware of so many aspects of my Deafness, and began making conscious choices about my behaviour! 

Most of my discoveries about Deafness have gone into my book, Future Girl. My editor, who thought she had a good grasp of Deafness, was stunned by the layers to our experience that she had never considered.

Order now in time for Christmas.

Learn Auslan – Cities and weather

This week’s Auslan signs are a mixed bag. We’ve got some major international cities, and some signs to help you communicate about the weather.

  • Paris
  • New York
  • London
  • Rome
  • nature
  • snow
  • rain
  • wind
  • storm
  • sun
  • wet
  • dry

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Activities

Here are some Auslan signs for activities – school subjects and music:

  • game
  • play
  • music
  • science
  • maths
  • English
  • sport
  • guitar
  • drum
  • violin

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Countries

Here are some signs for other countries. Note that these are Auslan signs – sign language users in these countries often have their own, different, signs for their country.

  • England
  • America
  • Germany
  • India
  • China
  • Japan
  • Russia
  • Norway
  • Denmark
  • Sweden
  • France
  • Poland
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Spain

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Transport and machines

This video shows Auslan signs for some transport modes and machines. Kids, especially boys, tend to enjoy using these signs, so they are good ones to share if you want to encourage the young people in your life to sign.

  • skateboard
  • scooter
  • truck
  • rocket
  • helicopter
  • truck
  • engine
  • robot
  • sword
  • gun

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Around the House

Here are some Auslan signs for items you will find around the house:

  • cup
  • plate
  • knife
  • fork
  • bowl
  • tap
  • bottle
  • towel
  • brick
  • doll
  • teddybear

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Family

We covered some family signs earlier. Here are a few more that will be useful:

  • partner
  • family
  • husband/wife
  • grandma
  • grandpa
  • cousin
  • niece
  • nephew
  • married
  • baby

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Clothes

Here are some useful signs to help you talk about clothing:

This is the vocab I’ve shown you:

  • clothes
  • dress
  • shirt
  • skirt
  • pants
  • jeans
  • socks
  • shoes
  • boots
  • coat
  • bag
  • hat
  • wardrobe

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.

Learn Auslan – Australia

Auslan was brought to Australia with Deaf convict, Betty Steele, who used British Sign Language (BSL). Over time, and with separation from England, our sign language has evolved to be a separate, but similar language. Presumably it was Betty Steele or one of her friends who made up the sign for ‘Australia’ – you can think of the sign as picking up people in England and disposing of them by dropping them down in Australia.

This video shows signs for the name of our country, Australia, and our states. Notice that several of them are simply letters of the alphabet.

  • Australia
  • Melbourne
  • Brisbane
  • Adelaide
  • Perth
  • Darwin
  • Sydney
  • Victoria
  • New South Wales
  • Queensland
  • Northern Territory
  • South Australia
  • Western Australia

My apologies, but the video omits a few places. Here’s a description for how to sign them:

  • Tasmania – fingerspell T A S
  • Hobart – fingerspell H and point down
  • Australia Capitol Territory – fingerspell A C T
  • Canberra – With your non-dominant hand, form a ’1’ with the pointer finger. With your dominant hand, create the letter C. Rest the letter C on top of the pointer finger.

This post is part of my free online Auslan course. See the rest of the course here.

To learn more about what it is really like to be Deaf, details about the Deaf community and how Auslan is used by Deaf people, read my book, Future Girl.