Teaching baby sign language

Ever since babies have been born on our planet, the wish to communicate with them arose in every parent. However, babies can’t talk. They cry, they scream, they laugh and they fuss. As parents we can just guess what they are trying to tell us. Are they hungry? Are they in pain? Are they scared? Or do they think grandpa is really funny? Teaching a baby sign language is very useful when we are trying to grasp what they are telling us. No more second guessing. We have the answer straight from the horses m…… euhm baby’s mouth.

Besides the obvious advantage of being able to communicate with your baby studies have shown that there are several other advantages to teaching a baby sign language.

1. A strong relationship through teaching baby sign language.

Have you ever tried building a good relationship with someone who does not speak your language? It’s hard; communication is a very important factor when it comes to getting to know someone. It’s the same with your baby. With teaching your baby sign language, you are empowering your baby to communicate in a way that you can understand. Through baby sign language you get an insight into your baby’s thoughts which allows you to get to know your baby in a unique way.

Additionally, teaching a baby sign language is all about having fun with your baby. You are giving your baby your undivided attention while you are teaching him/her the signs in a playful manner. Babies long for love and attention and they have a natural curiosity to learn new things. You are satisfying both those needs by teaching your baby sign language and thus the baby will grow fonder of you.

Sharing activities between a parent and a child is an excellent way of building a strong relationship. Teaching baby sign language gets your parental relationship with your child off to a flying start as it has you and your baby already share an activity from very early on in the relationship.

2. Less frustration through teaching baby sign language

Baby’s frustration is caused to a large part by not being able to communicate wants and needs. The frustration will most likely turn into crying or screaming. At this point, you will most likely also feel frustrated as a parent because you want to help your child but don’t understand why your child wants or needs.

Teaching baby sign language puts you in the position of understanding your baby’s needs in a matter of moments because he can sign you:

  • “I want to eat.”
  • “I want to drink.”
  • “I want to sleep.”
  • “I have pain.”

Children who can communicate their wants and needs cry less and experience the world as a place where their thoughts and feelings matter. Signing children are perceived as being more positive by their parents. Raising small children can be a challenge and reducing frustration and cause for tantrums through better communication is a very welcome additional effect of teaching baby sign language.

3. Early development through teaching baby sign language

Studies show that teaching baby sign language has a positive effect on speech development as well as on brain development in general. A study testing eight year olds who had sign language taught to them while they were babies showed that they had an average of 12 IQ points more than non-signers.

Additionally teaching baby sign language supports fine motor development and stimulates an interest in learning.

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