Image of poached salmon on a plate with dill and white sauce with silverware beside the fishOriginally developed by Roberto Santiago

Competencies Addressed:  Depiction in ASL

Time Required for Activity: 40-60 mins

Approach:  Language focus

Objective:  To determine and incorporate locative, descriptive and instrument classifiers in ASL.

In this activity, you will practice explaining how to cook poached salmon in ASL. 

This activity is is part of a series that focuses on different skills using the same text.

Language Focus | Consecutive Interpreting | Simultaneous Interpreting


You will watch a video from Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube channel.  Here’s the description:

(PP) Contains product placement. Check out Donal Skehan’s beautiful salmon recipe, perfect for a Scandanavian style Christmas, or any time of the year! Oven-poached with lemon, white wine and dill & served with a tangy cucumber pickle and pimped up crème fresh. Light, fresh and mouthwatering – Donal’s done it again!

Spend a few moments predicting what type of classifiers and depiction might be used to represent how you cook salmon.   




Watch the Video

Imagine you have a Deaf friend who is interested in cooking salmon who you will meet tomorrow and you will want to explain what you saw.

After watching it, spend some time thinking about what types of classifiers you will use and how you might depict the process described in the video.

Create Your Re-Telling

Video your re-telling. Focus on use of classifiers and depiction. If you do not remember the entire video, do not worry. The point is to focus on being able to depict the process and have effective classifiers.

Analyze Your Re-Telling

Watch your video of your re-telling of the process of preparing the salmon. Focus on your use of depiction and classifiers.

Going In-Depth

In analyzing your language use, you may want to use the sections on Classifiers, Space and Grammar (pp. 105-191) from Taylor, M. (2017) Interpretation Skills: English to American Sign Language.  All three of these Major Features are a part of effective depiction. If you are working with an interpreting mentor or ASL coach, have a discussion about your work.

Watch “Deaf Julia Childs”

The portion of the video with “Deaf Julia Childs” is from the start to 7:18.  The video will stop automatically the first time you play it.

Compare her use of CLs to your own.  You may want to mute the video so you are not distracted by the English interpretation.


  • Her salmon has visible weight.
  • Her use of space, and use of her own body in describing how to interact with the salmon
  • How her |counter| set up stays consistent (did you visualize your kitchen workspace while re-telling?)
  • What aspects of her CL use can you incorporate into your own work?

Re-Explain the Process

Image of poached salmon on a plate with dill and white sauce with silverware beside the fish

After reviewing both your own work and Deaf Julia Childs, plan out your use of CLs and re-record your ASL explanation.

Reflect on what changed between your two versions.

Optional:  If working with a mentor, coach or a colleague, engage in peer review and feedback