15 October 2020, by E-van and Terry
I enrolled Raphael, Terry, and myself in a Baby Signs class 6 weeks ago and I am glad to announce, we’ve GRADUATED! (Ok…what I really meant was, we completed the lessons). I really wish there were more lessons as we had so much fun learning them!
Now, I can proudly say I can do 88 signs! What a huat (auspicious) number! Haha! All my aunties rejoice along with me!
We followed the American Sign Language, apparently the more standardised version of language signing. If you are teaching another language together with English, it might take a little longer for them to connect the dots.
Before this class, we’ve already been using the sign “milk” with Raphael regularly. And that is something that’s already ingrained in him. Whenever he wants milk, he shows it to me. As with everything, he learned it through repetition and practice! Whenever I asked if he wants milk, I will always accompany it with the action and proceed to offer him milk. It actually started with me doing it every night before he sleeps because he knows it’s milk time. Subsequently, whenever I’m about to offer him milk, I will do the sign. He caught on pretty soon with that!
Tap on image(s) if the GIFs are not moving:
This is “milk”. Basically, you do a squeezing action, opening, and closing.
At 14 months old, they can pick up signs faster. So far, he has mastered 20 signs, some of these include all done, bear, bird, duck, dog, good job, sleep. There were many signs we learned that I thought were crucial like Help and Hot. And words like diaper (change), more, and shower are regular words we were taught to have better communication with Raph. We have gotten to a point where I like to test him on signs that he already knows and it makes him feel good each time we use it. I bet he feels smart 😂
The easiest and first few signs for young babies to pick up is a wave. When we say “hello!” or “bye-bye!” because this requires no fine motor skills and waving is quite easy for them to follow. There are some signs that we already do with babies without even having to learn sign language. Like “flying kiss!” (I always thought it was called french kiss 😂), “high five!” and “clap your hands!”. These are pretty straightforward, so remember to have fun with your bub!
“Baby sign language is an effective way to help your child communicate, allowing your non-verbal little one to express his needs before he knows how to use words. Better communication, in turn, leads to smoother interactions and fewer frustrations (for both of you).” ~ whattoexpect.com
And it’s also lots of fun! Would you like to learn “more” signs?
This is how you sign “more”. Especially useful when you ask the little one if they’d like more food or more water etc:
This is how you sign “more” accurately. Sometimes the little one sign it differently as to how they perceive it like how Raphael is doing it below.
It is completely fine if the baby does it a little differently. I find it very cute!
Raphael is signing “dog” over here. He is patting his lap, like how you pat a dog!
This is “bear”. Like paws, and cross them on your chest!
This is how you do “frog”. Just stick your tongue out! They love sticking their tongues out 😛
And with that, we are “all done!” with a super crash course of baby signs!
Book recommendation to do these few signs with: “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see?” You can check out a short IGTV video on my Instagram to see how Raphael did these signs! I’m always so amazed at how much they are absorbing all this information at such a tender age. And they are always listening to us!
A few notes to know when teaching little babies these signs… Make sure you have eye contact with them and repeat a few times, and do it slowly so they can see it and mimic it properly.
One more before we go:
One of Raphael’s favourite – “Bird”! Because we see them everywhere! Just tap your index finger and thumb together a few times.
Hope you enjoyed this entry! If you’re keen on taking this course, I learned it from @shubhrasleepsolutions through zoom for 6 weeks!