We’ve made a few field trips as a family equipped with new signs to teach our baby. It’s always a good idea to be prepared when going somewhere different. Once your child becomes proficient in signing, he will look to you to label things in his environment for him.
We packed a picnic and went to our local airport to watch the planes and helicopters take off one day. Our baby already knew the sign for AIRPLANE, but seeing the helicopters up close was very motivating to learning this difficult sign. HELICOPTER is tricky for young ones because it involves both hands and finger movement.
The picnic area is on the opposite side of a highway to the airport, so my son was equally excited to see the various large trucks, buses, and motorcycles, and do the signs for each of these!
Another trip we took was to a field where deer like to congregate. The opportunity to sign DEER while looking at one in real life instead of in a book or on the internet was so motivating! We also had a walk through the surrounding woods where we could practice signs like TREE and SQUIRREL.
While you can’t always be prepared with new signs you might need while out and about, planned field trips allow you to learn the signs you might need in advance. If your child wants to know a new sign you don’t know, simply keep talking about it until you get home and can check our online dictionary!