Your baby cries to communicate his/her wants and needs…but your baby doesn’t need to cry! Baby sign is the perfect substitute for the communicative behavior of crying!
By teaching your baby to sign, not only will you reduce both of your frustration that results from breakdowns in communication, but your laid back attitudes will help you to develop an even closer bond!
Introducing baby sign to your baby before the onset of spoken language has been proven to incite verbal language development, enhance overall cognitive development and even improve later academic skills!
Baby Says More Grow n’ Tell gives parents the tools to teach their babies how to use signing to communicate before they have the verbal ability to speak.
Put an end to your constant fear of the unknown by teaching your baby to make his/her wants and needs known!
Baby Sign Language is a form of basic gestural, or visual, communication that can be taught to a baby before the onset of spoken language. It is easy to integrate into your daily routines with no extra time required.
We provide a free demo so you can see how easy, fun and stress relieving signing can be.
Complete the 4 simple modules teaching you how to teach your baby to sign.
Integrate signing into yours and your baby’s daily routines, no EXTRA time needed!
Expand upon your baby’s first signs by adding more specific signs, introducing phrases and short sentences, and even teaching your baby to use manner terms.
How Does Your Baby Say “MORE”?
Your baby’s inability to express him/herself creates anxiety for both child and parents. Crying is in fact your baby’s way of communicating with you. By substituting signing for crying, your baby will naturally feel less distress, as will you. Baby signing allows babies as young as 6 months to communicate their wants and needs without shedding a single tear!
You’re baby can learn to communicate that he/she is:
You don’t need to feel frustrated when you aren’t sure exactly what your sobbing baby wants! Even in the wee hours of the night!
Bond With Your Baby by Replacing Crying With Signing
Sign language for babies reduces frustration resulting in a closer parent-child bond. By empowering your baby with communication, you also empower yourself with knowing what your baby wants. Don’t waste another minute trying to decipher your baby’s cries when you can be making unforgettable memories instead! Teach your baby to sign “MOMMY” or “DADDY” and you’ll really make the other parents jealous!
Give Your Baby a Head Start
Baby sign is easy and fun to learn all the while enhancing overall language development and later academic performance. Signing with your baby incites spoken language, which is the foundation for written language and, consequently, academics. Research demonstrates the following developmental advantages:
- Earlier onset of spoken language,
- Larger vocabulary size,
- Enhanced verbal development,
- And even a 12 point IQ advantage, which was demonstrated by an NIH follow-up study of one hundred 8 year-old children who had been taught to sign as babies.
Navigate the Bi/Multilingual Silent Period
Often children in bilingual or multilingual households appear to have a delay in one or each of their languages when looked at individually, or perhaps experience a perceived regression of skills or a period of silence. Not only is this typical, but justifiable. Remember, your child’s language repertoire equals the sum of its parts and your child has the gift of multiple “parts”! Nonetheless, while your child develops multiple languages, you can use baby signs to facilitate his/her expressive language so that he/she can stay focused on organizing the different input from each language without the frustration of not being understood by others.
Dating back to the 19th century, linguist, professor at Yale and writer for the Webster’s English Dictionary, William Dwight Whitney, observed children of deaf parents beginning to sign as young as 6 months of age while still maintaining typical verbal language acquisition. Therefore, these children were noted to communicate younger than children of hearing parents and still began speaking according to typical developmental milestones. Whitney discovered that signing allows for earlier communicative abilities and ultimately facilitates verbal language.
You can technically begin modeling baby signing as early as birth; however, underlying comprehension for signs, long-term memory for words and their referents, as well as adequate motor coordination emerge at about 6 months of age. Nevertheless, I recommend starting with baby sign as early as possible so as to expose your baby to gestural communication prior to its emergence, just as you would expose your baby to spoken language well before he/she is capable of verbalizing.
Each infant varies in his/her development of the ability to sign based on his/her specific developmental trajectories, with age and amount of exposure being huge factors. Your baby will not be able to sign prior to being able to focus on hand movement (joint attention) and having the cognitive capability of matching a sign to it’s referent (symbolism). Seeing as these two prerequisites emerge around 6 months of age, I certainly would not expect a baby to sign any earlier. All in all, it is important to be patient with your infant and diligent about your signing routines.
There is no prescribed amount of time to sign with your baby. You must imbed signing into your and your baby’s daily routines, such as all three meals, playtime, bath time and so on and so forth. Your baby should be expected to communicate his/her wants and needs in order to have them fulfilled, that is why it is important to start with requesting. Requiring that your baby learn to sign EAT, MILK, GIVE ME, etc. to request might add more time to your daily routines at first, but it will eventually become effortless and instinctual.
Teaching your baby to sign has many benefits, including:
- Reduced baby distress due to his/her ability to communicate
- Reduced crying and tantrums
- Mothers who are more “tuned in” due to increased self-confidence
- Improved parent-child communication
- Strengthened parent-child bond
- Increased joint attention and engagement in two-way conversation
- Advanced comprehension
- Larger expressive and receptive oral language vocabularies
- Enhanced literacy if signing is paired with reading
- And, even the potential for a later IQ advantage (*needs more definitive research)
Firstly, baby sign is not a language, rather a method of introducing communication to babies. Languages have complex grammatical systems, which baby signing lacks seeing as its purpose is basic communication prior to the emergence of verbal language. Secondly, there is not a universal sign language used by deaf individuals around the world. There are approximately 300 different sign languages, including American Sign Language, British Sign Language and Nicaraguan Sign Language to name a few.
You should use signs from any sign system that you would like, or you can use improvised signs. Improvised signs are home signs. It is not only okay to create your own signs, but it is recommended. Often babies will use their own gestures to communicate their wants and needs, such as putting their hands above their heads to be picked up or rubbing their eyes when it is time for bed. These gestures are not coincidental and are readily available tools for communication…Use them! Whichever signs or sign systems you decide upon, make sure to be consistent and always to use the same sign/referent combinations.
A single sign should be paired with a single referent regardless of the parents’ spoken language(s). That is, it is not necessary to use multiple signs to indicate the same items/referents just because there is more than one language spoken in your household. Remember, baby signing is meant to teach communicative function. It is not a sign language with a complex grammatical structure, but rather a symbolic means of basic communication prior to the onset of speaking. Pair the sign with the word in both (or all) languages spoken by the family to promote bi/multilingual language development.