Wildcats Learn To Talk With Their Hands

TyKierra Montgomery, a 6th grade member of the club, signs the word mother.

TyKierra Montgomery, a 6th grade member of the club, signs the word mother.

Have you ever wanted to learn a new language? Ever thought about using your hands to talk instead of your mouth? Well here is your chance! Why not sign up for one of Saluda Trails’ newest clubs – The Sign Language Club?

All students and teachers are invited to come out on Wednesday mornings at 7:55 to learn American Sign Language or ASL. The club meets until 8:25 a.m. in room B110 on the 6th grade hall.

ASL is a way for Americans who are deaf to communicate with one another using their hands. Even people who are not deaf enjoy learning it.

Mrs. Macaulay, a district interpreter who works at Saluda Trail, started the club.

“I came up with the idea of starting the club because kids were watching me interpret for one of my students,” said Macaulay. “Teaching sign language is my passion, when I see kids on the hallways signing or talking to me in sign language I feel good, knowing that they are learning it and actually using it.”

Macaulay said she has had both teachers and students to show up for meetings and they are always eager to learn more.

The interpreter said while kids are waiting for the meetings to start, she asks them to go up the board and write words they would like to learn. One Wednesday they could be learning how to sign foods such as hamburgers or cheeseburgers, the next it could be learning how to sign simple phrases such as “How are you?” or “My name is ____, it’s nice to meet you.”

Macaulay said members have even signed the Pledge of Allegiance at the Student/Faculty basketball game. Each meeting holds something different.

“I enjoy learning sign language because it is like learning a new culture like Spanish,” said

. Montgomery said she didn’t know any sign language before she began coming to the meetings. “I heard about it, and I wanted to check it out,” Montgomery said.

Although Lucas McConnell, a 7th grader, isn’t part of the sign language club, he said he recognizes the importance of students learning the language.

McConnell, who is 13 years old, began signing when he was just 3 years old.  “I learned sign language involuntarily,” McConnell said.  “I had to learn it because my mom and dad are both deaf.”

Macaulay said the club is always opened to new members.

“We’re hoping that this will become an elective for students,” Macaulay added.


Sabrina Wilson, a 6th grader, signs I love you.

Sabrina Wilson, a 6th grader, signs I love you.

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