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Old 02-18-2009, 10:14 AM   #1
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Smile Questions about Baby Signing

I have a 16 month old son who doesn't have a very big vocabulary yet, and has started to often whines/get frustrated. I wish I could communicate better with him!
I really want to try baby signing with my next (who is only 3 months old now) and if it's not too late... start with my toddler.
Any tips on how to start? Any good programs, dvds, books, or starter kits you know of?

I'd love to hear from mamas who have done signing and hear what you think.

TIA!

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Old 02-18-2009, 10:19 AM   #2
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

I never used any programs...because I know sign language (my aunt and uncle are deaf)....

I loved using it with Steven...we started when he was 6 months old...he still signs today..."please"....however at 26 months I ask him to speak the words as well as sign them...so he'll sign "please" and say "pwease"


signing was awesome...I know that there are programs out there...we bought a baby einstein signing video...I got super bored with it...and really didn't want Steven to watch videos (of course that's changed)

Good luck momma
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Old 02-18-2009, 10:39 AM   #3
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

The only vidoe/tv that DS like is his "Baby Signs" show. He giggles and claps his hands with delight when we put it on, lol. We started watching it when he was about 9mo.

I think if you really want your kids to sign, you've just got to practice. Learn a few that you think would be useful, and EVERY TIME that word is appropriate, use it with the sign.

So, when you're ready to eat...ask you child "Do you want to eat? (using the sign for eat..."

You get the idea. DS caught on pretty quick and even though he's talking now, he still uses some of his signs when he REALLY wants something.

"More" is his fav
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Old 02-18-2009, 10:44 AM   #4
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

We started signing with both girls when they were about 6 months old and it took them until they were about 10 months old before they actually started signing back. We started with "more" and "all-done". Once they started signing those back we added "Please" and "thank-you". By the time they got those down, they were both starting to talk.

The only video the girls watched on signing was the baby Einsteins one with Marly Matlin. It gave them a few useful signs but not many. The 4 signs mentioned above were used most often.

Definitely not too late to start with your 16 month old.
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Old 02-18-2009, 10:51 AM   #5
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

I can understand what you're going through. My 16 month old is just starting to talk and his vocabulary is VERY limited. However, he knows 50+ signs so he is able to communicate with me. We started when he was about 9-10 months old. I just started showing signs as I spoke certain words. We started with "milk", "more", "all done", "eat" and other simple words that we used often. As he learned the signs, I would teach him more.

Don't get discouraged. There were many times I would show him a sign over, and over, and over again. After a couple days of him not repeating the sign, I would give up. Then surprise! Days, or even weeks later, he'd use the sign. At this age (16 months) he learns sign very quickly and enjoys learning and using new signs. He even makes up his own signs (which turns me into a detective trying to figure out what he's saying ).

Some people think that my son is delayed in his speaking because we sign with him. I think that my son is just a slow talker and I am SO grateful that he signs to me (otherwise I think I would pull my hair out from frustration).

On the funny side: Everytime we go out, Zack calls older-looking men "Grandpa". Sometimes even younger men and older women. It's very cute and funny, but a little embarrassing. I'm just glad they don't understand what he's saying .
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Old 02-18-2009, 11:02 AM   #6
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

My son is almost 2, with very few words so it is difficult to really understand what he wants. He understands everything I say to him, just can't communicate back! We started with "eat" and "sleep", and are working on "more" now. He picked up sleep the very first time, eat took a few days. I was amazed at how quickly he learned it, we didnt use videos, cards or anything. Just used the sign and word in everyday "conversations". We're starting with my 6mo now I have also noticed his attempts at speech are improving also, he is verbalizing alot more!
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Old 02-18-2009, 11:10 AM   #7
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

I used to teach baby signs and it's a lot of fun! Mostly the videos are for you to learn and then practice with your child... there might be classes somewhere near you, and that would be my first recommendation because then you can get to feel more comfortable signing, etc. If not, a great resource for you is called "Sign to Me"- there are a TON of signs on that video as well as great information and reminders of how and when to use them. For children, a great video with basic signs and signing is called "Signing Time" I think the website is www.signingtime.com but I'm not sure. Those videos are great and the songs are fun. HTH!
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Old 02-18-2009, 11:35 AM   #8
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdeemarie View Post
I can understand what you're going through. My 16 month old is just starting to talk and his vocabulary is VERY limited. However, he knows 50+ signs so he is able to communicate with me. We started when he was about 9-10 months old. I just started showing signs as I spoke certain words. We started with "milk", "more", "all done", "eat" and other simple words that we used often. As he learned the signs, I would teach him more.

Don't get discouraged. There were many times I would show him a sign over, and over, and over again. After a couple days of him not repeating the sign, I would give up. Then surprise! Days, or even weeks later, he'd use the sign. At this age (16 months) he learns sign very quickly and enjoys learning and using new signs. He even makes up his own signs (which turns me into a detective trying to figure out what he's saying ).

Some people think that my son is delayed in his speaking because we sign with him. I think that my son is just a slow talker and I am SO grateful that he signs to me (otherwise I think I would pull my hair out from frustration).

On the funny side: Everytime we go out, Zack calls older-looking men "Grandpa". Sometimes even younger men and older women. It's very cute and funny, but a little embarrassing. I'm just glad they don't understand what he's saying .
Thanks so much EVERYBODY for the advice! I agree with you, jdeemarie, your son isn't delayed because you sign with him. Everything I've heard says that it only speeds up the speech learning process. And that only makes sense to me.
How I wish I would have started earlier with my son!!

I will take all of your advice, mamas, and start signing. I think I am going to buy some instructional dvds and/or books. I'm off to look right now.

about your son calling older men "Grandpa."
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Old 02-18-2009, 11:43 AM   #9
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

I used some signs with both the girls. I stuck with the basics (milk, eat, more, and help) They caught on quickly. DD1 used signs until almost 2.5. She was talking very well by then but she kept on signing too DD2(19mos) had a major language spurt last month and doesnt sign anymore.
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Old 02-18-2009, 11:05 PM   #10
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Re: Questions about Baby Signing

Baby signing saved us with my son!! Start with a few high interest and high need words. I really like the 3 video set called my baby can talk. They cover a lot more signs than the baby signs ones do in one short 20 minute video. The videos are short and baby slow with classical music. You watch with them and learn together...not a TV tune out experience. We only watched the fist one for a long time. Your child will probably pick them up quickly I bet. I also had a few books to look up words not covered in the videos. Go for it!
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