We have been signing with our daughter Afton since she was seven months old. She’s now 21 months and usually speaks the words she’s signing as well. This often leads to confusion about why we sign with her if she’s not deaf. Truth be told, I thought the same thing before I joined the team at Two Little Hands Productions last year and we started using Signing Time with our kids.
Prior to Signing Time, we were completely “signless.” But once we started signing with Afton, my wife and I, as well as the older kids quickly caught on so that eventually the whole family was signing with Afton at every opportunity – it was so fun – and addictive – seeing her understand us and exert her own personality on our family dynamic. We discovered that it really lived up to all the press – we were communicating with Afton far before she could express herself verbally. We continue to use it because it’s turned out to be a phenomenal aid to help us both as she’s learning to speak. Even if I can’t understand her words, I understand her signs. We’ve also seen a much lower frustration level than I recall having with our two previous kids (who we did not sign with as babies) when they were Afton’s age. She’s not perfect but she doesn’t fly off the hook because she knows she’s understood. Our experience has been great and it’s nice to see validation popping up in the press , seemingly on a weekly basis these days!
I found the article below, published in STLtoday.com, the other day and thought it did a great job explaining the benefits of baby sign language and even mentions Signing Time! Enjoy.
Signs show that babies can be taught simple hand gestures, written by Wendy Sharky.