I love to share parenting ideas, homeschooling information, sign language experiences and more.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
How do you communiate with an infant who doesn't understand words?
does one communicate with an infant who doesn't understand words yet?
Try using signs.
Gestures are natural and common across the globe. All
babies will use gestures with or without you teaching sign. They strive
to communicate and will do so without you in crying, yelling, pointing,
throwing and sometimes tantrums. Try using sign as a way to relieve this
frustration and build a strong bond with your baby at a young age.
Babies who become toddlers without sign will use pointing and looking at you as a way of asking about something. Wouldn't it be wonderful if you could use a sign to communicate the answer. And further more how wonderful would it be for that toddler to then use a sign or two to communicate back and talk about what they wanted to talk about!
Imagine you are in the grocery store and your toddler begins to whine and cry in his seat. You don't have sign language, what do you do? You talk and talk and talk to your child, saying things like, "We are almost done, shhh, mommy loves you, or daddy knows your sad, it's ok, 5 more minutes." Your baby is lost in your foreign land as you speak 'French to him or her'... they are lost and can't communicate.
Now the same scenario, with a signing baby. Perhaps baby starts to whine and you sign "EAT"? while asking are you hungry? or "SLEEP"? are you tired? or "HURT" are you done sitting? Your baby may sign back to you "EAT"... and then you can open that bag of rice crackers and let him have at it while you quickly finish your shop. Relieving the frustration and communicating with your baby, strengthening that bond.
This happened to me exactly with my son Geran. When he was 9 months old, we were in the store and he began to cry and I signed EAT and so did he again and again he kept doing it. I gave him something to eat and he settled right away. Later he signed SLEEP while we were in the line up and I gave him his special blanket and he layed his head on it while I unloaded the groceries. It felt like I had a special power. It was amazing! I never looked back.
This is one of the main reasons I promote signing. I want every parent to feel like they have this special confident power and closeness with their child. It is wonderful!