Journal Article

The ABCs of New Zealand Sign Language: Aerial Spelling

Wayne Forman

in The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education

Volume 8, issue 1, pages 92-96
Published in print January 2003 | ISSN: 1081-4159
Published online January 2003 | e-ISSN: 1465-7325 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/deafed/8.1.92
The ABCs of New Zealand Sign Language: Aerial Spelling

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Aerial spelling is the term given here for the way many deaf people in New Zealand, especially the elderly, manually represent letters of the alphabet. It is simply a system using the index finger to write letter(s) “in the air” and is an integral part of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). Unfortunately, recent research into NZSL is either dismissive of it or fails to acknowledge it. This article describes aerial spelling and discusses its nature, as well as its indifferent treatment in current literature.

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Subjects: Education ; Linguistics ; Teaching of Specific Groups and Special Educational Needs

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