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International Day of Sign Languages

Celebrate International Day of Sign Languages by learning a few signs and showing support for the Deaf community!
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September 23
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Introduction

Celebrate International Day of Sign Languages on September 23 by recognizing the importance of sign language in communication! This day was established in 2018 to promote the use of sign languages, highlight the importance of access to language services for deaf people, and honor their culture and identity. Sign languages are used all over the world and have been around for centuries – with some variations even predating written language! So take this opportunity to celebrate sign language diversity and raise awareness about its vital role in communication today.

History of International Day of Sign Languages

International Day of Sign Languages Dates

International Day of Sign Languages Timeline

<div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1620</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>First School for the Deaf</div><div class='timeline-text'>In 1620, the Spanish monk Pedro Ponce de León establishes the first known school for the deaf, using a form of sign language for instruction.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1760</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>First Public Sign Language School</div><div class='timeline-text'>The Royal Institute for Deaf-Mutes in Paris is established in 1760 by Charles Michel de l'Épée, marking the start of public sign language education.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1817</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>American School for the Deaf</div><div class='timeline-text'>The American School for the Deaf, the first permanent school of its kind in the United States, opens in Hartford, Connecticut in 1817.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1960</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Recognition of American Sign Language</div><div class='timeline-text'>In the 1960s, linguist William Stokoe presents research establishing American Sign Language (ASL) as a full language, opening up academic acceptance and study of sign languages.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>2001</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>UN Recognition of Sign Languages</div><div class='timeline-text'>The United Nations recognizes the linguistic rights of deaf people, emphasizing the importance of sign languages, in a resolution adopted in 2001.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>2018</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>International Day of Sign Languages</div><div class='timeline-text'>The United Nations declares September 23 as International Day of Sign Languages, aiming to promote awareness of sign languages and their contribution to cultural diversity.</div></div></div>

How to Celebrate International Day of Sign Languages

<div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>1</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Learn some sign language</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Take the time to learn some basic sign language words and phrases. There are lots of resources available online to help you get started.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>2</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Teach sign language</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Find a local school or community center and offer to teach a sign language course. This is a great way to get involved and spread awareness of sign languages around the world.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>3</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Organize a sign language event</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Organize an event in your community that celebrates sign languages. Invite people from all walks of life to come together and learn more about sign languages.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>4</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Attend a sign language performance</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Check out local performances of sign language plays, musicals, and other theatrical productions. This is a great way to experience the beauty and power of sign languages.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>5</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Watch a movie in sign language</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Watch a movie in sign language with subtitles or audio description. This is a great way to immerse yourself in the world of sign languages and appreciate their beauty.</p></div></div>

Why International Day of Sign Languages is Important

<div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>A</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>International Day of Sign Languages celebrates and supports deaf communities</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>In recognition of International Day of Sign Languages, we are reminded to raise awareness and celebrate the unique culture and language of those who are part of the global deaf community. This day brings an appreciation for sign language as an important part of these individuals’ lives.</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>B</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>It promotes equal access to communication</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>Sign language serves as an invaluable bridge between individuals who are hard of hearing/deaf and those without such a disability. By raising awareness and understanding, sign languages can provide equality in terms of access to educational opportunities and other benefits that may be denied to people with hearing impairments otherwise.</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>C</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>It preserves cultural diversity</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>With over 300 Signed languages spoken around the world, there is a great deal of cultural diversity being preserved and celebrated. From American Sign Language to British Sign Language or any of the others, these different forms give us insight into other cultures that would otherwise remain hidden. Which helps us all learn more about each other!</p></div></div>

5 Enlightening Facts for International Sign Languages Day

<div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>1</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Not Every Country Uses the Same Sign Language</h3><p class='facts-content'>There are over 300 different sign languages used around the world, each with its own grammar and vocabulary. This diversity reflects the rich cultural differences between Deaf communities globally.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>2</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Sign Languages Aren't Simplified Spoken Languages</h3><p class='facts-content'>Sign languages are fully independent languages, with their own rules and syntax. They are not simply a signed version of a spoken language, but complex visual-spoken languages in their own right.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>3</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Sign Language Has Its Own Dialects</h3><p class='facts-content'>Just like spoken languages, sign languages can have regional dialects. This means, for example, that American Sign Language (ASL) used in California may differ slightly than ASL used in New York.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>4</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Infants Can Learn Sign Language Before Spoken Language</h3><p class='facts-content'>Babies have the ability to comprehend and use sign language long before they are able to speak. Teaching infants sign language can provide a means for early communication, reducing frustration and promoting language development.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>5</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Sign Language Supports Cognitive Development</h3><p class='facts-content'>Research indicates that learning sign language can have cognitive benefits, such as enhancing visual-spatial skills and improving attention span. It also promotes inclusivity and empathy towards the Deaf community.</p></div></div>

International Day of Sign Languages FAQs

When is International Day of Sign Languages?

International Day Of Sign Languages is celebrated on September 23 every year. In 2024, this significant date falls on a Monday.

International Day of Sign Languages Dates

Year
Date
Day

2023

Sep 23

Saturday

2024

Sep 23

Monday

2025

Sep 23

Tuesday

2026

Sep 23

Wednesday

2027

Sep 23

Thursday

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