Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Signing Love

I don't think it's too big of a surprise for most of our friends and family to know that we are teaching sign language to Isabelle. We taught it to Jadon when he was younger and it has been a life saver so we're continuing to teach it to Isabelle. Even though we've been doing this for years, we still encounter weird or confusing looks from some people whenever we tell them that we're teaching Isabelle sign language. So why sign language?

I think everyone has heard about the wonderful stage of parenting known as the "terrible twos." This is usually the time when kids will go through many tantrums. Tantrums usually occur because a child gets frustrated from not being able to communicate what they want or how they feel to the parent. Sign language helps to reduce the terrible-ness of the terrible twos by giving the child a way to communicate what they can't yet say. Little kids are much better with their hands than they are with their speech and teaching them sign language gives them the chance to communicate much earlier on than they normally would with vocal speech alone.

A great little scenario of how beneficial sign language can be at a young age can be found in Baby Signing for Dummies. It describes a scenario with a baby waking up in the middle of night. The baby is crying and the mom tries to feed him, change him, and rock him, but he's still crying and nothing is working to calm him down. In the scenario with a signing baby, the baby then signs "hurt" by his mouth and the mom realizes that he's teething and gives him some medicine so he can go back to sleep. Without being able to sign, the mom wouldn't have been to easily figure out why her baby was crying. Andrew liked this story so much that he told lots of people this so that they can easily see how important sign language can be.

Isabelle is now just over 17 months old and is signing like a maniac. Jadon has also been learning lots more signs than he ever did when he was younger. It's something that Jadon and Isabelle are doing together and it's super cute watching Jadon trying to ask Isabelle to sign something. She's also starting to say a lot more words now too and is definitely not a baby anymore. Being able to communicate with her is priceless and I love that we can do this with her so early on.

If anyone is interested in learning more about signing or have any questions about it, feel free to let me know. I would love to help out in any way I can.
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1 comment:

  1. I don't know why anyone would think teaching your baby to sign was weird. It seems like a very good idea to me.