Take Communicating With Your Baby Into Your Own Hands…Literally!
Whether you are a first time parent or you are already a pro, you have likely figured out that understanding what your baby is trying to tell you (hungry, needing a diaper change, tired, teething etc.) is of the utmost importance and is no easy task to try to understand when they don’t have words to tell you.
You may have heard people talk about teaching sign language to babies as a means to bridge the gap before verbal language begins. Signing with your baby will help strengthen the bond between your family and its newest member by allowing your child to communicate with you during their pre-verbal stage. Teaching your babies to sign enables THEM to ask YOU a question, tell you their needs and desires or initiate a conversation about something that interests them.
Using sign language with your baby lessens frustration, crying, and tantrums, is scientifically proven to build more brain function and raise your child’s IQ and increases your baby's ability to pay attention and listen by teaching them in infancy to stop, look, and listen to what is being said or shown.
Many people are amazed that babies as young as 6 months old can learn sign language when they aren’t even capable of talking yet. Research has proven that using sign language can bridge the gap between comprehension and speech production. This is possible because babies can acquire the ability to understand language well before their muscles in their mouths enable them to actually form words and speak to you. Many people inaccurately assume that babies don't speak because they don't understand. Once you empower your child with the ability to communicate with their hands, they will amaze you with what they have to say!
When your baby starts signing, everything becomes easier. Your baby has learned that using their hands to communicate is much more effective than crying or whining. If your baby is fussy, you no longer have to play the guessing game of what is wrong (hungry, needing a diaper change, teeth hurting, bored) because your baby will simply tell you what they need. The other exciting thing about signing is that it opens up a window into their world and allows them to tell you about the things that interest them. Perhaps your baby wants to let you know that he is thinking about cats or birds or even that he is excited that he sees another baby in the park. Signing enables you to have a conversation with a baby who can’t even speak yet. Your child suddenly becomes an active member of the family at such a young age. What a truly amazing gift for both of you!
If you still need a reason to sign with your baby, think about this. Your baby will be able to influence their world from a very young age by initiating and participating in conversations while their non-signing peers are limited to grunting, pointing, and crying. Your baby is also likely to be more stable emotionally since they feel understood and validated long before they are able to speak. The more you and your baby communicate, the greater the opportunity for positive interactions and this leads to higher self esteem and self confidence for your baby.