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Emily's Magic Words in American Sign Language

These signs are intended for use with babies and toddlers. In addition to forming the sign, you may also use facial expressions to reinforce your meaning or the intensity of your emotions.


With the right flat hand facing your chest, make a circle to the right over the center of your chest.

Thank You:

Touch the chin or lips with the fingertips of one flat hand, then move the hand forward until the palms are facing up. The hand moves out and down. This sign is similar to the gesture of kissing one’s hand and extending the hand towards someone else.

You’re Welcome:

With the dominant open hand, palm up and held at waist level just less than one foot out, bring your hand inwards to your waist. You can also use a natural head nod.


Touch your hand to your forehead as if to salute, and move your hand outwards a few inches – a kind of "mini" salute.” The natural gesture for waving “hello”—the open right hand waving back and forth several times—is used when saying hello to a group of people.


Make the natural gesture for good bye: the open right hand faces the person you are saying goodbye to and opens and closes several times.

I’m Sorry:

The ‘A’ handshape   'A' handshape circles the center of the chest to show that a person is feeling sorrow. The palm faces the body.

Excuse Me:

The left hand is held palm up. Holding all the right fingertips together, move the right fingers from the heel to the tip of the left hand, like wiping away a mistake.

I Love You:

There are two easy ways to express “I love you.” One is a single sign which combines the letters I, L, and Y:     'I' handshape 'L' handshape 'Y' handshape

With your palm facing the person, extend your thumb, index and pinkie fingers while keeping the middle and ring fingers closed and move your hand back and forth, left to right. To show intensity, you can ‘tap” your hand in and out towards the person.

An alternative is to cross your arms over your chest with your fists closed and then point to the person to whom you are saying “I love you.” This sign is also used in an affectionate manner to show one's appreciation toward others.



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