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How To Learn Sign Language

Timber (ASL story) – with captions for the hearing ;)


Hi! Let me tell you a story. There’s a man in a red shirt with green stripes and a hat. He’s carrying a big axe and a lunchbox. The man goes to work. He walks through the forest, carrying his axe and lunchbox. He sees a tree that he wants to chop down. The tree is this big. He starts to chop down the tree. He chops until the tree starts to lean over, then puts down his axe, backs up, and shouts, “TIMBER!” The tree falls down. He picks up his axe and lunchbox and continues through the forest. The man sees an even bigger tree. He chops and chops, and finally the tree starts to lean over. He puts down his axe, backs away, and shouts, “TIMBER!” The tree falls down. The man is hungry, so he sits down to eat his lunch. He looks in his lunchbox and finds a thermos of coffee. He drinks the coffee. Next, he takes out a sandwich and eats it. Last, he pulls out an apple, polishes it, eats it, and tosses the core into the forest. Finished! He puts away his thermos, shuts his lunch box, and continues walking through the forest. The man sees an enormous tree! He rolls up his sleeves, turns his cap around backwards, and starts chopping. He chops and chops, but the tree doesn’t lean over. He keeps chopping and chopping, and finally the tree leans over. He puts down his axe, takes a few steps back, and shouts, “TIMBER!” …But nothing happens! He tries again: “TIMBER!” Still, nothing happens! What to do? Aha! He pulls out his cell phone and calls for help. The doctor arrives, and the man describes the problem. The doctor puts his stethoscope in his ears and listens to the tree. He declares that the tree is deaf. “Deaf?!” says the lumberjack. “Deaf,” says the doctor. The man thinks for a moment, then has an idea. He shoos the doctor away from the tree, then starts to finger-spell: T! I! M! B! E! R! The enormous tree falls down! It’s so big it bounces and shakes the ground, making the man and the doctor fly into the air. Afterward, the man and the doctor give each other thumbs-up.

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