Will My Baby Learn To Talk
One of the myths of teaching your baby sign language you will hear is that "your baby won't learn to talk if you sign to them". See what Jackie, a Special Education teacher and parent who signs with her children has learned from experience.
But will my baby learn to talk?
How many of us ask ourselves this question as we venture into the world of sign language for babies? My guess is that many of us do, or we are asked by well-meaning relatives and friends.
As a mother who has experienced signing with a hearing infant, I can tell you with unquestioned certainty that your signing baby will learn to talk, perhaps even sooner than they normally would.
We began signing with Carmen when she was about 6 months old. We started with a few basic signs and since then her signing vocabulary has increased to about 20 signs. Now, at 16 months, she continues to sign as well as to learn to speak words (ball, cheese, apple, puppy to name a few) and even small sentences (Bye-bye Momma!).
While you or your well-meaning friends and family may fear that signing will retard your infant’s ability to speak, teaching them to sign will undoubtedly help them to say their first words.
As a Special Education Teacher I have seen first hand how signing can help children associate symbols with sounds and meaning. It is amazing to see a child learn to read by using hand gestures. It works just as it works for Carmen and other infants.
Not only has signing helped Carmen learn new words, she discovered she could communicate effectively and have her thoughts and feelings understood. How many of us adults long for the same comfort?
So, please – the next time you or someone else questions you for teaching your child to sign, be reassured that you are doing your child an incredible service and setting them on the path for greater success!