ASL Classes for Families

American Sign Language (ASL) is the primary language of the American Deaf Community.
At the Maryland School for the Deaf (MSD), we are dedicated to fostering communication at home and enhancing bilingual development in both ASL and English for our deaf/hard of hearing students. To support this mission, we offer ASL classes for families, caregivers, and school personnel. 
Our ASL classes are open to family members—parents/guardians, grandparents, siblings, and extended members— of students enrolled at MSD. Classes are also offered to school personnel who work directly with our students.
Flexible Learning Options
We offer ASL classes on both campuses during the day throughout the school year, accommodating both families and staff. Our classes are available in both in-person and virtual formats, fostering small, interactive, and engaging learning environments.
Expert Instruction
Our ASL classes are led by qualified Deaf instructors who hold American Sign Language Teachers Association (ASLTA) certification or training. We use the highly regarded "Signing Naturally" curriculum, widely recognized in colleges across the nation. Our classes not only teach ASL vocabulary and phrases but also delve into Deaf culture and history.
Course Levels
We offer various course levels designed to accommodate a wide range of skill sets:
ASL I (Units 1-6): Learn introductions, sharing personal information, discussing surroundings, and engaging in activities, among other topics.
ASL II (Units 7-9.4): Cover topics such as giving directions, describing others, making requests, discussing family, occupations, and routines.
ASL III (Units 9.5-11): Explore methods for getting attention, negotiating in signing environments, using name signs, locating and describing items, and requesting solutions.
Conversational ASL: Engage in small group conversations, participate in class presentations, and join discussions on current issues within the Deaf community.
Handshape ASL: Expand your vocabulary by focusing on specific handshapes.
ASL classes at MSD are not offered for high school or college credit.
Schedule for the 2023-2024 Academic Year
>> Registration for the Spring 2024 semester is now closed. We appreciate the prompt response and enthusiasm shown during this registration period. Please note that registration will reopen in August for the Fall 2024 semester.
Each class session is scheduled for a duration of 15 weeks.
Sundays / 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. / Frederick campus (in-person)
Mondays / 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. / Zoom (virtual)
Tuesdays / 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. / Zoom (virtual) - a year-long class
Tuesdays / 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. / Columbia campus (in-person)
Fridays / 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. / Zoom (virtual)
Tuesdays / 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. / Columbia campus (in-person)
Wednesdays / 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. / Zoom (virtual)
Wednesdays / 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. / Frederick campus (in-person)
Tuesdays / 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. / Zoom (virtual)
Tuesdays / 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. / Columbia campus (in-person)
Handshape ASL
Wednesdays / 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. / Zoom (virtual)
There are no registration fees; our ASL classes for families are free. Please note that registration is only open to families and caregivers of students enrolled at MSD. No exceptions to this policy will be made.
Debbie Myers, ASL Instructor