Developed by Mark Halley

Time Required for Activity:  30 minutes

Competencies Address: Depiction in ASL


To identify depiction in an ASL text.

Step One: Science News in ASL: Ball Lightning

a person with a short hair wearing a green shirt with black background

Prediction:  You will watch a segment of Michael’s lesson on ball lightning. In the lesson, Michael first recounts his own experience witnessing ball lightning from a vehicle.

First, do a Google search to become familiar with ball lightning. You might search for pictures or videos to help you understand what ball lightning looks like. Before watching Michael’s lesson, predict what types of depiction he might use to describe his experience. For example, how might Michael depict the shape of the ball lightning, its movement, and his vantage point from a vehicle?

Step Two: Watch the Video

Watch the Video:  Watch this segment of the video and identify as many instances of depiction as you can.

This is the list of concepts Michael described with depiction in the text.

Step Three: Application

Watch the Video Again:  Now that you have seen the list of concepts described with depiction, watch the video again to ensure you fully understand how Michael uses depiction to recount his experience witnessing ball lightning from a vehicle. After fully understanding Michael’s use of depiction, watch the video in slow motion and carefully copy Michael’s signing, taking note of how you produce depiction. Try doing it first at 50% speed, followed by 75% speed.