Baby Sign Language: The are two different schools of thought on which sign language to teach your baby or toddler.
Family Site Since 1997
Sign Language for Your Baby and Toddler
Which Baby Sign Language Do You Teach?
Sign Language: Those who make up their own signs have to remember and use the same gestures and teach others to use the same gestures.
I discovered there are two different schools of thought for teaching signlanguage to babies and toddlers. Those differences have led to many programsbut the programs can all be reduced to two basic systems for teaching signlanguage.
One system uses signs based on American Sign Language (ASL) or British SignLanguage. This is the language taught to the hearing impaired.
The other system uses signs that you or others make up. The theory hereis that it is easier to teach sign language if the signs are simplified.
I’m not sure it really matters which system you use or even if you do the signscorrectly. The only important thing is that you and your baby understand whatthe sign language means. This allows family communication which is the mainpoint of teaching your baby sign language.
Having said that, I would like to point out that using made-up signs issimilar to using baby words or words that have meaning only to your own family.Eventually baby words and family words have to be replaced with adult wordsothers can understand.
With that in mind, using the American Sign Language with your baby doeshave definite advantages. It can be used to communicate with the hearingimpaired and with other adults and children who know American SignLanguage.
Those who make up their own signs have to remember and use the same gestures.
Those who use American or British Sign Language (ASL or BSL) need to look up and learn keywords and gestures, too. However, those ASL or BSL words are easy to refer to at alater date, particularly if you have American or British Sign Language reference materialson hand.
One thing is common to both systems. Parents must repeat the signs again and again, weeks or even months before thebaby begins to sign back.
More about sign language and your baby. Back to other articles about sign language.
More information about sign language for your baby or toddler.
Don’t spend a fortune on books and videos for sign language products before you have experience. The truth is that sign language is not hard to learn for you or for your baby. I would only purchase two, possibly three, sign language items.
My recommendations for teaching your baby sign language:
1. Dr Joseph Garcia authored the classic in the sign language field: Sign With Your Baby.
Buy the video only or buy a kit which contains the video, a short and simple to understand book, plus a chart showing the signs.
The sign language video is a must for the section on teaching sign language and the last section which demonstrates American Sign Language words. I would buy the kit to get the accompanying sign language book unless you buy the CD Pick Me Up at the same time. That CD includes a workbook. One sign language book is probably enough although both of these sign language books have their positive and different attributes.
2. At the same time I would add the music CD Pick Me Up for the signing and singing as well as the excellent sign language workbook for parents. This fun, interactive experience for you and your baby is all it normally takes to rapidly add words to your American Sign Language vocabulary.
3. If at any time you or your babies are having problems learning sign language, purchase Baby See N Sign, Volume I. It presents American Sign Language words three different times: as a still picture, in slow motion, and at normal video speed.
Frankly, I believe the above three items are all the sign language products you need to own.
If you have an expanded budget, here are some other sign language products I would consider buying.
See sign language products I would not buy and the reasons I would not buy them here.
Why purchase any sign language items? Why not use the library for your sign language needs?
You probably need at least one sign language product on hand for reference. A CD of music to sign by teaches sign language daily. Plus your baby can watch a sign language video like Baby See N Sign to supplement your own signing.
Parents: Have you had experience with baby sign language? Will you share that sign language experience with CyberParent readers?If so, please click here. Wewould love to publish your baby’s or toddler’s success or failure with sign language. We will not usefull names, but would like to publish your general location. Thanks for your sign language assistance!
Note: The opinions expressedherein are exclusively those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect theposition of CyberParent. They are not intended to take the place of advice of ahealth, legal, or other professional whose expertise you might need to seek.