Questions!, Novice Low, ASL

Please Note: Many of the activities on the Pathways Project OER Repository were created by upper-division students at Boise State University and serve as a foundation that our community of practice can build upon and refine. While they are polished, we welcome and encourage collaboration from language instructors to help modify grammar, syntax, and content where needed. Kindly contact with any suggestions and we will update the content in a timely manner.  — The Pathways Project

About the Boise State World Languages Resource Center (WLRC) Language Activity Repository

The activities provided by the Boise State World Languages Resource Center (WLRC) serve as foundational activities which can be adapted by any language and scaled up or down on the proficiency scale. Many of these activities offer an English Version that is “language-agnostic” to provide language instructors from around the country a platform to remix these instructional materials, infusing them with their target language and culture! The activities within the Pathways Project OER Repository seek to help students solidify their interpersonal speaking and interpretive skills through task-based situations or communicative activities. These activities should be facilitated in the target language for approximately 90% (or more), per the recommendation of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

How to use the WLRC Repository’s Activities:

1. Use the Activity as is:

Before you begin:

  • Most activities are 30 minutes in duration, unless otherwise specified.
  • Be sure to read through the activity description, and review the list of required materials. You will notice that the activity materials are also highlighted in yellow throughout the activity instructions.

If you have any suggestions about grammar, syntax, and content, please kindly contact

2. Remix for Your Language Classroom:

When you are ready to begin remixing the activity, in order to adapt it for the needs of your language classroom, simply click the blue “Remix This Resource” button at the top of your screen. This will then take you to a screen with a NEW, editable version of this activity. The text provided in purple is a suggestion of what you might say to your students in the target language, and may be altered for different levels and age groups. All activities have “NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do” statements, a warm-up, a main activity, and a wrap-up.

Many of the activities include printable cards and other instructional materials such as Google Slideshows. If you would like to make changes to these materials in Spanish, follow the instructions below:

  • Google Slideshows:
    • To begin, go to File -> Copy to create an editable version of the slideshow.
    • Once finished with your changes, please complete the following steps to share:
    • Click on Share
    • Who Has Access
    • Ensure link sharing is on and allow external access.
  • Materials Saved as PDF: Please email and we will provide you with an editable copy. Please allow up to two business days for a response. For YouTube videos and other websites, hyperlinks are provided. 

3. Adapt for Another Language:

  • See the linked English Version at the top of the activity (English Version may not be available for all activities)

Questions! Novice Low


This lab will introduce ASL students to name signs and how to use WHQ questions. The warm-up will be a short video of Nyle DiMarco and Tyler Oakley signing together. In the video, they also discuss sign names and how a person can acquire one.

Proficiency Level:

Novice Low


Questions, Handshapes, Name Signs, Introductions

Relevant ACTFL World-Readiness Standards


Standard 1.1: Students engage in conversations, provide and obtain information, express feelings and emotions, and exchange opinions.

Standard 1.3 Students present information, concepts, and ideas in ASL to an audience of listeners or readers on a variety of topics.

Idaho State Standards:

COMM 1.1: Interact and negotiate meaning (spoken, signed, written conversation) to share information, reactions, feelings, and opinions

COMM 2.1: Understand, interpret, and analyze what is heard, read, or viewed on a variety of topics.

COMM 3.1: Present information, concepts, and ideas to inform, explain, persuade, and narrate on a variety of topics using appropriate media in the target language.

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

  • I can introduce myself, including greetings and my name (Novice)
  • I can identify name signs and how one can acquire one (Novice/Intermediate)
  • I can use my cardinal numbers (Novice)
  • I can respond to and create yes/no questions (Novice)
  • I can respond to who, what, where, questions (Novice)

Materials Needed:


Name Signs Video

Name Signs Presentation

Question Cards


1. Begin by introducing the Can-Dos for today’s activity and showing the YouTube video to the students.

“Today, we are going to watch a video about name signs. After we finish, we will talk more about name signs"

2. After the video is over, discuss handshapes and name signs with the students.

"What did you think of the video? Did you see they talked about name signs?"

3. After the students have discussed the video, show the name signs presentation.

"This talks about name signs and who has one. Here are some people who don't have one. You must be given a name sign, you don't pick one yourself"

Main Activity

1. Begin by reviewing the signs for questions (who, what, when, where, why, how). Also review cardinal numbers up to ten.

"We will start with signs for questions.  Who, what, when, where, why, and how. Next, we will sign numbers."

2. Hand the question cards out to students and pair them up. Have them start asking each other questions based off of the questions cards.

"With your partner, ask different questions. You can ask "What is your mom's name?" or "Where are you from?"

3. After students have asked a question, they will cross the appropriate question off of their sheet. Walk around and help students as needed. Remind students to ask each other different questions and not ask the same questions as their partner.

"After you ask a question, cross it off your sheet. Ask different questions than your partner. If you need help, ask me."

4. After students have completely finished asking questions with their partners, have them switch partners and do it again. 

"If you're finished, sign more with your partner and wait. We will switch partners when everyone is finished."


Ask the following questions to finish the lab: 

1. "What was the easiest question to ask?"

2. "Do you feel comfortable with asking different people questions?"

3. "What was easy and what was challenging?"

End of Lab:

• Read Can-Do statements once more and have students evaluate their confidence. 
(Use thumbs up/thumbs down or download our student cards.) 
• Encourage students to be honest in their self-evaluation.
• Pay attention, and try to use feedback for future labs!

NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements:

• I can introduce myself, including greetings and my name 
• I can identify name signs and how one can acquire one 
• I can use my cardinal numbers 
• I can respond to and create yes/no questions 
• I can respond to who, what, where, questions 

Where are we? Rate yourself on the weekly Can-Do Statements using this scale: I get it!, I got it!, I kind of get it..., I don't get it...
Where are we? Rate yourself on the weekly Can-Do Statements using this scale: I get it!, I got it!, I kind of get it..., I don't get it...
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Where are we? Rate yourself on the weekly Can-Do Statements using this scale: I get it!, I got it!, I kind of get it..., I don't get it...

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