Friday, September 11, 2009

Sign Language

I think I need to write a whole blog about this b/c it deserves some attention. In this house, we have been signing for the basic needs (milk, more, water, eat, all done, play, bath, sleep, & a quite a few more) since the kids came home from the NICU. It started w/ milk. We figured that would be an important one since that was all they had for the 1st 5 months of their lives.

As we introduced solids, we started signing the word eat as well as "all done" & "more". I think these were the most important b/c they could tell us if they were full or wanted more.

Now, don't think that my kids were signing from the beginning b/c the truth is I waited a long time & was very patient to finally see a real sign. It was Gabi & the sign was milk at about 9 months old.

Just like verbal language, it takes a while for them to connect the sign to the actual meaning & then get proficient in using them. It has been an amazing process to see unravel. Ian, being that he hasn't really busted out w/ any real words except mama, dada, & da (which he uses for every other word in the English language), knows more words in sign language than he does English. This is very important to me b/c that tells me he does know how to communicate & understands the meaning of language & communication.

Gabi has gotten extremely good, able to sign things such as mommy, daddy, friend, chair, & swing as well as the other words we have taught them all. This has been done w/ help from 2 videos, both are Baby Einstein & go through all the major signs. They are entertaining & I have been able to learn along w/ them.

How do we do this? We sign every time the action occurs. For instance, any time they got a bottle, we would sign milk before, during & after the bottle. Same thing w/ eat, more, all done & any other sign I can remember along the way. We are expanding our vocabulary & I am having to learn new words.

I need to get more videos of them signing. Here is a picture of the kids at the table & Sofi is signing for milk.

I honestly think this is part of the reason we don't have as many temper tantrums. They are able to tell me when they need something to drink or if they are hungry. It is great! I would recommend this to any new mom & dad out there.

By the way, did you notice how many hits I have???? Over 200,000!!!!!!!!!


Liz said...

You should try the Signing Times DVD's. IMO, they are so much better than the Baby Einstein DVD's. Especially since your kids are over a year old.

Jennifer said...

My sister taught her daughter to sign. I remember when Chelsea had to learn the harsh lesson that just because you say "please" doesn't mean that you get it. (And face it, that's a hard lesson to learn, because at first, anytime they say "please", they get what they want - milk, toy, up, whatever...) In this case, I think she wanted outside in the winter (it was -30, not the best time to go play). Whenever she said "please", it was "pees", and she'd hit her chest with her hand. Because she was kept being told no, she'd ask louder and louder, but the funniest thing was that she'd not only ask and say "PEES!!", she'd just HAMMER on her chest, so she was emphasizing with word AND action! She was really pounding herself, too... cute, yet sad, yet funny all at the same time!

Christina said...

My girls are learning the basic signs from the Baby Einstein dvd also! They have been watching baby einstein videos since they were little things, and they love it!!

Machelle said...

I started late with the signing. My twins are NICU babies and are lacking in the verbal skills. I started baby signs at 9mo but really got into doing it about a month ago (12 mo old) and one of mine is better than the other. She knows "more" and "all done" even though her "all done" looks like her dancing...but I know she is not dancing during dinner! {grin} I think it is wonderful you started so early!! Next baby, for sure, I will start in the begining. And I am one of your 200,000 hits!

MDtripmom said...

We sign here at our house as well and it's so exciting and practical! We are big fans of Baby Signing Time as well and prefer it over Baby Einstein's signing videos.

Anonymous said...

I also have to recommend signing time! We just rent our from the library. Lily's 22 months and she is getting REALLY good at signing, I think mostly because of those videos. Cat, dog, flower, all her colors (Although we're still working on what's what!) eat, milk, more, all done, etc. She has quite the vocabulary, much more than my older 2 did at her age, and I attribute it to Signing time!

Surviving Triplets said...

I would love to get the Signing Times videos but we would have to get them from the library. Can't go buying more stuff, especially w/ Christmas so close!

Rose said...

This video is awesome! My parents are deaf, and regardless of the fact that I sign with him regularly, he learned every sign that this video had to offer from this video, except for milk and please.

Jaddy Brown said...

Great video!
Thanks for letting me know too much that you have discussed above.