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Why You Should Teach Your Baby Sign Language

Updated on September 23, 2012
By Jackie Durnin via Mumzone
By Jackie Durnin via Mumzone | Source

Have you taught your baby sign language?

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Communication is the most basic reason why you should teach your baby sign language. Communication plays a role in all our lives. From a baby's cries, to a teenagers' rants to the loving stares exchanged between a newly wed couple. Everything on this planet communicates with each other.

Sign language is one form of communication that can be used when normal methods are not an option. A baby in the beginning stages of life cannot talk, although, it does communicate with its parents via crying, fussing, cooing or smiling. Developmentally, babies start to gain control of their hands, arms and legs much sooner than they start talking.

They can grab things, point and clap their hands long before they verbally start saying "mama" or "dada". Knowing this, it is common for babies who are born with a hearing impairment to learn sign language. However, is it only hearing-impaired infants that can be taught sign language? Certainly not!

Baby sign language is becoming more popular with new parents and even some "seasoned" parents. It's different than American Sign Language in that it is specifically made for babies. American Sign Language would be difficult for a baby to learn, so baby sign language was invented to help parents and their babies communicate with one and two word gestures.

There are pros and cons to teaching your baby sign language. A pro would most likely be the ability to communicate with your baby before they can speak. An example of a con would be that it does take time. Don't expect your child to learn over night. It can take weeks or months before your baby starts signing back, but don't give up! Scientific results have shown that babies that learn sign language start speaking earlier.

Also, think of it as an investment, if you will. You can use your new skills to teach to other parents or as a caregiver to a baby, you can teach the baby you are watching how to sign. It's a win-win situation. Do your research and dive right in. I've attached some really good articles related to baby sign language for more information.

Kids using baby sign language

Comments are appreciated!

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    • stayingalivemoma profile image

      Valerie Washington 5 years ago from Tempe, Arizona

      Thanks Cristal! Yes, it is definitely worth it....and don't they just look adorable signing? it's the cutest thing I've ever seen! Thanks for commenting!

    • profile image

      Cristal Escuadra 5 years ago

      Baby signing rocks! It is amazing was a year if baby signing at SignShine did to my nephew. He is very engaged in signing and learning! His vocabulary expanded significantly. The family is very happy with the results. BABY SIGNING IS DEFINITELY WORTH IT THE TIME AND MONEY.

    • stayingalivemoma profile image

      Valerie Washington 5 years ago from Tempe, Arizona

      Hi TeachableMoments! I am so happy you shared your story and had a good experience with baby signing. I think more and more parents need to explore this with their children. It's so helpful to both the child and the parent and its lots of fun! Thanks for commenting!

    • TeachableMoments profile image

      TeachableMoments 5 years ago from California

      Great hub. I taught my daughter baby sign language and I found it to be very useful when she wanted to communicate but did not have the verbal skills. Instead of crying for "more" she just signed. She knew how to sign quite a few words and it was fun teaching her. This is a very useful hub for other parents who are considering teaching their baby sign language. Voted up!