Once you have mastered the first few signs, your baby’s abilities will compound and each sign thereafter becomes that much easier to teach. However, in the early stages you should expect signs to come slowly. In fact, it might take a few weeks or even months to teach your first sign. Then it might take two weeks for the next one to come, and then another week for the second, then a few days and so forth for each sign thereafter. Eventually, you’ll reach what is called the “signing explosion” where signs are added daily or even instantly.
However, before you start, you should have the mental fortitude not to look too far forward. You should know that things will get easier with time, but don’t detach yourself from the moment. Reason being is that if you look too far ahead, you’ll get caught up doing signs for the wrong reasons. You aren’t signing at 10 months or 11 months or whatever so that baby can sign faster when they’re older and you certainly shouldn’t be trying to grow your baby up as quickly as possible. Signs are meant to connect with your baby right now, not tomorrow or the next day.
Having said this, know that the first sign are the hardest. Know this before starting so as to have reasonable expectations. There will be times when you think baby is never going to get it. You might even think that your baby isn’t getting anywhere or making any progress at all. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Even if your baby isn’t signing, he is still learning. His mind is making connections and more often than not, he is taking the information in receptively. His expressive language is on the way, I assure you. For all you know, he might start signing five minutes from now, or ten minutes or maybe he’ll sign the next day. There’s really no way to tell so keep on task and keep signing.