Signing Part III

Signing with our son was really a new experience for everyone involved (my husband, my son, and I along with a few family members, coworkers, students, and friends).  From my perspective it was a wonderfully enlightening endeavour that helped everyone involved communicate better while being a valuable learning opportunity (it seems that most people do not know much if any sign language).  That being said, I felt confident and excited when we started introducing sign language to our daughter when she was five or so months old.  Knowing from experience that it takes awhile to see the fruits of one’s signing labor, I started out slow trying to take advantage of potential signing opportunities by signing things that were relevant to my daughter.  It was around the same time that we initiated signing with our daughter that she started eating solids. Thus, most of the signs we introduced to her involved eating.  I would sign “egg” to her before we sat down for breakfast and she would stop what she was doing and scramble towards the table so that she could have some egg yolk, which was one of her first foods.  As she got a little older, we used more signs with her and we could tell that she could understand most of them, but she was not ready to start signing herself. It got to the point that I felt that she should be able to sign a few things but, in my opinion, she stubbornly refused to sign anything (she could wave and say “bye, bye” on demand and give high fives).  It was not until after she turned eleven months old that she finally started to sign “milk” which was quickly followed by “all done.”  As her final week of being eleven months old comes to a close, I am interested to see how well our one year old will sign. Only time will tell how her signing will progress!

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