Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Signing with Your Toddler

This week we are sharing tips for "Helping Your Toddler to Communicate" on the series, "One Year and Beyond"

Before I write anything, let me confess that I'm not a master of this mysterious toddler stage. With E being only 16 months old, the wild times of toddler-hood have only just begun!

I was hesitant to try baby signing at first, thinking maybe it was just another fad, but now have to say that signing has been a great way to connect with E. The online dictionary at Baby Sign Language.com has been a wonderful resource. Their dictionary includes easy-to-understand images and videos for everyday words. Plus, by using their online resources, we didn't have to spend money on buying books or flashcards!

We started teaching E signs at around 6 months and I questioned whether he was absorbing any of the signs we were teaching. Now as he is in the early toddler months, the "hard work" is paying off! Actually, teaching him wasn't hard at all. The key was just remembering to use the signs in our daily life and being consistent.

Basic Toddler Signs

Here are a few basic signs that we use every day. "Milk" and "please" are by far the most frequently used in our house. E has his own special version of some of the signs, too. For "hurt", he always points to his head, no matter where the "hurt" is. His signs aren't exact but the definitely get the point across!

Signing has saved us from some tantrums and E seems to be proud when he does his signs. Instead of screaming when he wants desperately needs something, signing makes him think and ask for what he wants which can prevent a meltdown (not to say it eliminates them, but it sure helps!).

"Milk"

Image Source: Babysignlanguage.com

"Please"

Image Source: Babysignlanguage.com

"More"

Image Source: Babysignlanguage.com

"Hurt"

Image Source: Babysignlanguage.com

"All Done"

Image Source: Babysignlanguage.com

And here is another one of his "special" signs: "Share Food Now!"

He really wanted some of the fruit snacks I was eating. Maybe I should eat vegetables more often because he never wants me to share those!


Do you have any tips to share for communicating with little ones?

Linking up at One Year and Beyond.

9 comments:

  1. haha that face is soooo cute!!!! :)

    Great tips girl! :)
    http://likeamorningcupofcoffee.blogspot.com

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  2. We use sign language too, just a few signs, but they are so helpful in learning how to communicate! My little guy is not a talker yet so I like the signs that he does and am glad that we have done them with him :)

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    1. Yes, they are so helpful! E's talking sounds like a different language to me and the signing definitely helps to translate :)

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  3. We are loving signing with our 16 mo old, too!!

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  4. Looooove this! I never really did get in to signing with Mia and there were definitely times I wish I had! I guess my problem was that I didn't know what to teach her! I'll definitely have to get educated before my next baby! Loved your post!!

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    1. Thanks, Courtney! All of the free resources available now have been so helpful. Youtube has a great "Baby's First Signs" video by Baby Einstein - that's one of our favorites, too.

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  5. Signing is so much fun and helps little ones in their early communication (and much later sometimes!) in a way that speaking can't do. :)
    I shared resources that we use, and our story, in this post, if you're interested: http://atlantamomofthree.net/2012/09/26/teaching-sign-language-to-my-hearing-children/ Have a great day!

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