When you studied hard on a topic you likely spent the majority of your time learning the diction/jargon within a field. For example, when you learned chemistry, you learned about the periodic table of elements, chemical reactions, and so forth. Once you understood and could use the terms in chemistry as proven through a test which requested you to apply the language, you had mastered chemistry. In fact, very little is different in baby sign language with respect to you and your toddler. Once your toddler masters language in all facets, they will have mastered the world. More or less of course, because at some point, someone also needs to be able to aptly apply the language too!
My introduction is cryptic, but related. Baby signing gives your baby a good shot a mastering toddlerhood. By learning the lingo of babyhood, your baby can build confidence. It is mastery of a topic that leads to the building of self-esteem. Once your baby can label the emotions; HAPPY, SAD, ANGRY, SCARED – they have an edge in controlling their reaction to such feelings. The language helps your toddler limit outbursts. When my son was FRUSTRATED or SCARED, he could communicate this to me. Just by labeling his emotions, he was able to deal with them in a more constructive manner.
Your baby can also master manners too. Your baby can learn PLEASE, THANK YOU, NO, SORRY, EXCUSE ME and can ask for MORE, say ALL DONE and on and on. All this language helps your baby control his world. The more control you can give to your baby, the more your baby will feel that they have mastery of their world. This is not unlike adults who feel confidence as they build control of their lives. On the other hand, adults who feel powerless over their lives tend to fall into resentment and then depression. The severely depressed feel that they lack control even in their own moods. This of course, is a far cry from what a toddler might feel, but giving your baby the power to talk is the best you can do toward helping them build confidence and take back some of the uncertainty from their lives.
As your baby learns mastery of toddler language, he’ll also learn its application. This will lead to diminished outbursts and tantrums. The sooner you empower your baby with language, the sooner he’ll be able to control his own self and his expectation. While some might feel this is moving a baby into adulthood too soon, when it comes to childhood, limiting tantrums can’t come soon enough. Should you teach your baby to sign, or if you already are, keep language as mastery in mind and see for yourself if it isn’t the case.