Handsigns: A Sign Language Alphabet

Kathleen Fain, Author Chronicle Books $13.95 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8118-0310-6
In this unusual abecedary, 26 animal pin-ups on their best, most serene behavior pose for page-size portraits which are then accompanied by insets demonstrating handsigns of the American Manual Alphabet. First-time author Fain's tidy saturated oil pastels, executed with confidence, encourage letter-learning and signing--in tandem. Indeed, parents and teachers may find that the two-way association of reading and hand gestures boosts a child's memory. Each signing inset is large and clear, easily interpreted and imitated. Two prefaces include information on American Sign Language (``the fourth most-used language in the United States'') and a brief history of manual speech (beginning with a 16th-century pioneer); the first also supplies tips for finger spelling, e.g., ``Try to keep each letter sign distinct from the others, and slowly mouth the word (not the individual letters) as you spell it.'' A glossary (not seen by PW ) will identify and provide facts about each creature, including the three or four not readily recognized. An enjoyable learning tool that will give many beginning readers an immediate sense of accomplishment. All ages. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/31/1993
Release date: 06/01/1993
Paperback - 40 pages - 978-0-8118-1196-5
Paperback - 978-0-590-48998-0
Prebound-Sewn - 40 pages - 978-0-613-88605-5
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