See My Language

Sign language training for parents of hearing impared children

Adult education program 

Editors: Albert Einarsson, NVL og Hilde Holtsmark, Statped

For norsk

About See my language


Sign language learning for parents of hearing impaired children - startup in 1996 
40 modules over a period of 16 years
A total of 1000 hours - 858 hours of sign language and 142 hours in:
- Bilingualism, interaction and communication 
- Audiology: legislation and rights pursuant to the National insurance act and the Education act.  
- Kindergarten and school 
- Parents and family 
-Culture and history

Three of Statped's four region centre offers the courses: the southeastern, the middle and the western regions.  
Seven weeks of the course take place at Ål Folk High School and Conference Center for Deaf People, in Ål in Hallingdal. The whole family is invited to participate in these weeks.
The program is also organized in cooperation with Signo school and competence centre, which offers its own courses adapted to its own user groups.

- Government Action Plan for People with Disabilities 1994-97 
- The Anti- discrimination Act (Discrimination and Availability Act) of 1 January 2009
- White paper No. 35 2007-2008 has further emphasised as a general language policy objective in Norway that:
- Everyone is entitled to language, to develop and acquire the Norwegian language, both official written Norwegian languages, to develop and use their own mother tongue or first language, including sign language, their native indigenous language or national minority languages, and everyone shall be given the opportunity to learn foreign languages

Sign Language is a language for the eyes, a visual language that is independent of hearing. In the world's different sign languages, the use of eyes, facial expressions and hand movements are part of the languages’ expression and grammar. Norwegian sign language is recognized as a full-fledged language and is a part of the Norwegian language diversity. In Norway, we estimate that there are about 16 500 sign language users: hearing impaired, with and without hearing aids/cochlea implants, their parents and family, and other

The evaluation shows that:
- multilingualism is an important element of the training for the parents.
- the methods have been well adapted to them as adults, and the sign language training has had a good balance between theory and practice.
- the training has helped parents communicate better with their children, especially in the daily communication.
- in general the sign language training achieves its objectives.
- the parents agreed that the sign language teachers have been proficient and also good at adapting the teaching and adapting and changing the teaching plans to meet the needs of the group.

See my language for 20 years

See my language is sign language training for parents of hearing impaired children - initiated in 1996. See my language consists of 40 modules over a period of 16 years. A total of 1000 hours – 858 hours of sign language training and 142 hours about bilingualism, interaction and communication. See my language has been thoroughly evaluated and the evaluations show that the program is a definite success.

See my language is an adult education program of a special character. It is unique that a training program has such long perspectives. See my language covers the parents' training in sign language, in parallel with the child's language development in their first 16 years. This set particular requirement for both the training plan, the implementation of the training and, not least, the organization of the course participation. A nationwide training plan requires extensive cooperation between the competence centres in which the training takes place.

Already in 1997, this was taken into account by establishment of a nationwide information and coordination committee - LIKU, who was responsible for the implementation of See my language at the centres. LIKU was leaded by a coordinator who worked for coordination and quality assurance of the training offer throughout the country.

The Nordic Network for Adult Education - NVL – have an aims to present good examples of adult learning in the Nordic region. In this case, the originally plan was to write a short article about See my language in Norwegian. An idea of ​​using sign language and storytelling on video appeared and gradually it became to that key people who was involved in the developing of See my language and Norwegian sign language tells their stories.

Here to the left is information about See my language and links to evaluations and the program itself on the website of Statped.

All inquiries about See my language should go to Statped.

A click on the image starts the story.

Kari Brustad

Deputy Director General in the Ministry of Education and Research, Department of Education and Training. Kari was an important driver in the development of the See my language concept. She has previously worked as a teacher of the hearing impaired and sign language. In her contribution, Kari explains the background; she draws the long lines and tells about the decisions that led to See my language program, an education program with long perspectives.

Brit Sæther Liltved

Brit was the first coordinator of LIKU, the nationwide information and coordination committee, and contributed greatly to the important coordination between the competence centres who was running See my language courses. In many ways, Brit has been the driving force and the key figure in the work that made the See my language program as a great success.

Arnfinn Muruvik Vonen

Is a professor of sign language at Oslo University College. He was the Director of the Language Council of Norway from May 2011 to January 2015. [1]. He has specially worked with deaf pedagogy and sign language linguistics, and took the challenge in adulthood to learn sign language as one of many other languages ​​he master.



Liv Strand

Specialist in psychology. She has 30 years of experience with working for good childhood conditions by child with hearing problems. She is concerned with family, language, development and identity. Glad to travel short or far! Like to sing and walk in the mountains, most of all, all the way to the top!

Aud Karin Stangvik

She had the main responsibility for the development of the sign language part of the See my language program when the course was established. She is a preschool teacher and linguist, and a happy owner of a beautiful Bernese dog. Aud Karin worked in the field of hearing for almost 30 years – by the way - it is a pleasure smiley

Bente Gry Carlsen Thomassen

She is sign language teacher at Signo school and competence centre in Andebu. She teach parents in sign language and in her contribution, she tells about her experiences.



Marte Eidsand Kjørven

Is a lawyer, and mom to Linea and Vilma. Marte likes to dance and drink coffee, preferably not at the same time. Linea and Vilma also like to dance, but prefer cocoa with cream. Vilma is otherwise a gentle, imaginative, somewhat rampant and kind-hearted girl who looks forward to start at Vetland School for hearing impaired.

Tore Morten Andreassen Figenschow

Is a Norwegian guitarist, composer, instrumental and theory teacher, and professor in electric guitar at the music conservatory at the University of Tromsø. It's as father in See my language program we meet him here. He has followed See my language from the child was little and until now, and soon completed 40 course week.

Gunn Støyva

Is an adviser and sign language teacher in Statped West. She looks at sign language as an enrichment. Since 2010, she has taught in See my language, but has worked in the field of hearing since 1991. Here she shares some of her experiences.



Bjørn A. Kristiansen

Is secretary general of the Norwegian Deaf Association In his contribution he tells about the importance of the program See my language for sign language as a minority language in Norway.




Editors for this report about See my language are:
Albert Einarsson, Nordic Network for Adult Learning, NVL
Hilde Holtsmark, Statped

We would like to thank the people who were willing to tell about See My Language and Norwegian sign language.
We would also like to thank Statped in Trondheim for interpretation and recording.
Thanks to Pernian Shafiei for working with video and English subtitles.