New grammar, dialogue videos

Posted on 5/11/2019

On Saturday 2nd November, TeachSign welcomed the addition of 40 new NZSL grammar videos and 25 dialogue videos to support NZSL level one teaching and learning. These videos were launched at a tutor training day at Auckland Deaf Society hosted by the Northern Tutors Branch.

So, what's the story behind this?

In 2018, the Office for Disability Issues commissioned a large project to look into NZSL teaching, and an NZSL tutors survey was conducted nationwide to collect information on improving the NZSL Level One curriculum. The NZSL Tutors Survey 2018 report recommended that a range of videos be developed to support NZSL Level One teaching and learning. On 15th June 2018, a resources advisory group meeting took place to discuss this report in detail and identified the need to produce grammar, dialogue and culture videos related to NZSL level one curriculum.

With support from the NZSL Board, the Office for Disability Issues contracted Merge NZ to produce these resources. This is a significant achievement because NZSL tutors throughout New Zealand face the challenge of not having accessible information to upskill our teaching and knowledge of NZSL grammar. For many years, NZSL tutors have relied on in-person training to get a better understanding about NZSL grammar structures, rules and guidelines to help them teach NZSL to students effectively. Tutor trainings do not happen often and there isn't one place where tutors can access videos to study and upskill themselves. There are some grammar information in the old Units 1-6 and Units 7-12 videos produced by NZSLTA in the early 2000s. However, these videos were not filmed digitally and there is an urgent need for new grammar videos.

The dialogue videos cover a range of dialogues shown on NZSL Level One PowerPoint files. NZSL tutors are now able to see dialogue examples on videos in NZSL so they can copy and practise before they teach. These videos are shown only in tutors section of TeachSign website, and there is a plan to make these available to NZSL students in 2020 so they can review and practise after class.

TeachSign wishes to congratulate Merge NZ, their fabulous crew and signers involved with this project. The signers did a brilliant job signing in front of the camera! NZSLTA members can view these videos at:

Deaf culture and narrative videos will be released in the next few months. Watch this space.

 Tutor training day at Auckland Deaf Society hosted by the Northern Tutors Branch

Tutor training day at Auckland Deaf Society hosted by the Northern Tutors Branch

Victoria Lessing, Lynette Pivac, James Pole

Victoria Lessing, Lynette Pivac, James Pole

Cake cutting to launch the videos

Cake cutting to launch the videos