Maybe it’s because my kids are teens and tweens now, but I feel like I don’t hear as many parents talking about sign language anymore.

When they were babies and toddlers, it was a trend to teach sign language words to all babies, not just those with hearing or other impairments.

Sign Language Words

Many people don’t know this, but ASL, or American Sign Language, is the 4th most common language used here in the USA. It’s also becoming increasingly common for parents to use sign language with babies and toddlers before they have verbal words.

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Sign language flash cards featuring a variety of sign language words.

We used sign language with Kevin as a baby and toddler and still use a few words. And when Brian was a baby, he independently began using signs just from watching us with Kevin. He knew “more” and “done” without us ever actively teaching it to him.

We knew that Kevin’s verbal expressive language would be slow to develop, and he was able to develop a few signs as a baby. Then, when we were using them with him, Brian picked them up on his own just by observing us with Kevin.

Sign language words in my sign language word book.

He used signs for ‘more’ and ‘eat’ and ‘I want’ before he could walk or talk.

Now that I have had both boys home for six months and no end on the horizon, we are emphasizing sign language again with Kevin. We are using his PECS pictures too, but they are not always readily available.

A black and white photo of two hands making a sign language gesture.

So it’s back to basics for us. He’s pretty good at “more” and “finished/all done” but I wanted to have something handy for other basic words and concepts.

When learning sign language, many people learn the alphabet and then finger-spell the words. But that would require the signer to know how to spell, which isn’t always easy with students and young children.

Common Sign Language Words

I am including multiple PDFs in this post so you can choose which ASL words you want to work on.

The sign language words that are included in these sign language flashcard PDFs are:

  1. all done/finished
  2. don’t
  3. eat
  4. friends
  5. help
  6. hello
  7. hungry
  8. like
  9. me
  10. more
  11. no
  12. play
  13. please
  14. stop
  15. thank you
  16. toilet
  17. want
  18. water
  19. what
  20. when
  21. where
  22. who
  23. why
  24. yes
  25. you

I have both a color version of these ASL flash cards and black and white sign language flash cards.

As always, connect with your child’s team before implementing any new programs. Many kids with learning disabilities struggle with the “W” questions and words, so I wouldn’t necessarily start with those until your child is ready.

Sign language words worksheets.

These printable sign language cards can be used with all ages, including baby sign language.

Common ASL Words

The free PDFs in this post have common words in sign language. They are on a worksheet so that the person can learn the signs, and also see the word and possibly learn it as a sight word. You can also encourage fine motor skills with writing, coloring, and tracing with your finger.

I have other posts about the sign language alphabet, colors in sign language, and numbers in ASL if you are looking for those.

Hello and Thank You in ASL

When getting started in American sign language, many people want to learn common words and especially words and gestures associated with everyday interactions and greetings.

Some examples:

  • How to Say Thank You in sign language
  • How to say please in sign language
  • How to Say Hello in Sign Language
  • The 5 W words in sign language– what, when, where, who, why

Other common ASL words included in these free printable worksheets are done, no, and stop.

It can be a great way for your child to communicate their basic needs and wants if they do not have a spoken language.

Sign Language Flashcards-Color

Sign Language Flashcards-Black and White

What is Sign Language?

Sign language is using gestures, movements, and facial expressions to convey a speaker’s message to others who do not know or understand spoken language.

Sign languages are distinguished from spoken ones in that they have developed without ongoing sound. Sign language is also referred to as an ‘interpreting system.’ Sign languages share many features in common with spoken languages.

We use our hands, arms, and bodies in the same ways that we use our mouths and tongues to make sounds when we speak. The first known manual systems of communication were developed by deaf people in antiquity who used hand shapes, arm movements, finger flicks, and facial expressions to communicate.

Perhaps one of the best-known sign languages is American Sign Language (ASL), which is used primarily in North America.

ASL is also referred to as “Deaf World” or “International Sign.”

It has been estimated that there are over 500 million signers worldwide. In fact, ASL is becoming increasingly popular worldwide with about 1 out of every 200 people learning it as their first language.

There are many types of sign languages around the world – for example: British Sign Language (BSL) is used primarily in Great Britain; French Sign Language (LSF) is used primarily in France; Korean Sign Language (KSL) is used primarily in South Korea; Japanese Sign Language (JSL) is used primarily in Japan; and Thai Sign Language (TSL) is used primarily in Thailand.

Developing Sign Language

There are many different ways to communicate. There are many different signs in sign language, and some of them can be difficult to learn. Learning how to sign language words can help you learn the hand gestures that go with those signs.

There are two ways to learn how to do sign language: you can learn by watching and mimicking what others do, or you can learn by doing it yourself. These free download PDFs can help you get started with 25 common words in ASL.

Signs Language Words

People who have a disability may have difficulties with spoken language. As a result, it may be helpful for them to use sign language to communicate.

Many deaf people attend school in order to learn ASL.

The need to communicate through sign language is essential to those who are not able to speak. However, learning American sign language is not always easy and requires a lot of time and practice.

If you scroll past the PDF sign language worksheets, you will see other skills you can work on while doing both the ASL and the worksheet.

And, here is another workbook of ASL words.

Happy Signing!

Don’t miss these other posts that I have with Sign Language Flashcards and Coloring Books.

ASL Printables

Free IEP Binder
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Don’t miss the other resources we have on the site about behavior. Behavior, when done correctly, is a large and sometimes overwhelming concept. But, if done incorrectly, the child will not change and in fact, behaviors could increase and psychological damage can occur.