Penelope is exploding with growth in the Baby Sign Language department these days. It usually just takes me showing her the sign once or twice and she signs it back to me.
I first starting doing sign language with her at about 5 months. It took her about a month to do her first sign; Eat. Then it took her another month to do her next sign; Rain. Oh, how she loved to sign Rain! You can just see her little eyes light up when she realized she was communicating in a more sophisticated way. The words have been coming slowly but surely ever since, until about a month ago and she just took off!
These are the signs she knows:
She doesn’t do them perfectly, each one is kind of her own little version. For example, the sign for water is your three middle fingers tapping your lips. She just taps one finger and she taps the corner of her mouth. So I have adapted and sign her version of the sign back to her. Not sure if this is what you are “supposed” to be doing, but I thought it would validating to her and be good encouragement that you don’t need to do it perfectly to communicate.
Here is a couple pictures of me teaching Penelope the sign for Flower, which incidentally, is one of the ones I have been doing the longest and she still hasn’t signed it back to me!
You just take your fingers together and tap on either side of your nose, like you are smelling the flower. I usually say the word, and then sign and then say the word again.
These are some of the books and resources we have used along the way:
This is what I started out with:
A friend gave this to me while pregnant and I really like it because it comes with three little baby board books that are literally Penelope’s favorite books.
It also has a little fridge magnet of lots of signs, so its helpful if you are in the kitchen and forget a sign, you can just reference it very quickly.
Then I won this DVD at raffle:
This link is for the entire kit, so I am not sure on the whole thing, but the DVD is pretty useful, because a live woman is demonstrating the signs. I think some of the picture books can be difficult to interpret and its nice to see someone actually doing the sign.
This is one of our favorite Baby Sign books:
There are so many out on the market, that we are able to pick up a different one at the library each week, but this is a great one.