What do they want?! Your baby is crying, looking at you to help them and the routine starts.
You change their diaper.
You give them a bottle.
You give them a snack.
You sing them a song.
You give them a toy.
You rock them to try to get them to sleep.
You say “SHHHH!”
You dance around like an idiot .
But why should we have to go through every trick in the book when your baby (yes, your little baby) could tell you what they need!
I have been a nanny for 10 kids (4 families) over the past 8 years, and now have a one year old son of my own, Miles. Miles and 8 of the children I nannied for could tell me what they needed before they could talk (the other two were over 5)!
How, you ask?
What an amazing concept. Your 6 month old baby could tell you simple things like ‘milk’ or ‘more’.
Baby Signs is a simplified version of American Sign Language adapted by Dr. Linda Acredolo and Dr. Susan Goodwyn after they realized that babies were using simple gestures from a very early age. This program has changed my life, and has surely kept my frustration levels lower now that I understand Miles’s needs. I started using the signs when he was 4 months old (I started early because I already knew the program. You can start at ANY age…it’s never too late!) and by the time he was 6 1/2 months he had started saying ‘more’ when he wanted another cheerio, and ‘eat’.
Yes, most of the signs in our house started off food related. It is something he wanted, and I used that! When he was 10 months, he had at least 10 words he could sign to us, and was even starting to sound out some of the words as he would sign them!
ok, you get the idea.
Despite what people would say to me when I would tell them I was signing with Miles, this program promotes early talking! Miles is now almost 18 months, and he still uses signs when he talks. He has even made up a few and adapted some of the signs to make them his own. I would love to say that it’s because he’s so advanced, but all babies do it! I’ve watched a lot of babies and I’ve seen them use their own little gestures for certain things. The first babies I watched were twins and one would brush his fingers on his cheek when he wanted his blanket. You see, his mom would rub the blanket on his cheek when she would rock him, and he turned that into his own sign for ‘blanket’!
Children are amazing, and these Baby Signs help to make them shine! Not to mention, you’ll really impress the people who see your baby sign. That’s fun, too.
The Baby Signs company has so many books for parents, as well as books, music, DVDs, & flashcards for your baby. They offer products in spanish as well, and they have an amazing Potty Training program that I used with the current twins I am watching successfully, and now I’m starting it with my son. What a neat little program that introduces potty themed signs to little ones, and it comes with a DVD, a book for baby, book for mama, stickers and a train whistle (all aboard the Potty Train is the theme). You can find info about the entire program, as well as purchase products at their website:
The Starter Kit includes:
- Baby Signs Favorites DVD
This full-length DVD for babies teaches six easy starter signs: Dog, Cat, Book, Hat, Duck and All Done
- Parent DVD with introduction from the authors and Video Dictionary with real-life demonstrations of 100 signs.
- Parent Guide
This 80-page guide provides step-by-step directions for signing families
- Signs at a Glance Flip Guide
Quickly find a sign with this unique flip guide. Includes 86 sign illustrations and 14 useful signing tips
- 4 Chunky Board Books
Four 4×4″ board books, 14-pages each, teach the following signs:
My Mealtime Signs (Eat, Drink, More, Milk, Cereal, Bib, All Done)
My Bedtime Signs (Stars, Moon, Book, Light, Sleep, Love)
My Bath Time Signs (Bath, Bubbles, Water, Toothbrush, Frog, Duck)
My Pets Signs (Cat, Dog, Bird, Bunny, Fish, Turtle)