Top reasons to teach baby sign language:
– Start talking with your baby now instead of waiting!
– Bridging the communication gap between 5-6 months (and up to 3 years)
– A way to bond and connect with your child
– Allows baby’s to become active members of the household very early
– Learn about your baby’s interests and permit them to start conversations
– Realize just how smart they are by giving them a voice.
– Reduce whining and tantrums
– Cut back on aggressive behaviours such as hitting and biting
– Give a baby control and power over their lives
– Build confidence in your baby
– Makes Mom and Dad’s life easier because needs and wants are signed
– Advance their communication abilities over other children.
– Increase their vocabulary, literacy and IQ.
– Involve more sense in communication to create more neuronal connections.
– Reduce surprises in your baby’s life to help them build mastery of their world.
– You can teach manners before the “terrible two’s”
– Communicate with them silently from across the room.
– Create stronger sibling relationships
– Impress others!
To answer the question, “do I care about all these benefits?” Stripping all but one away, the answer is a resounding “no!” If the research evolved to the point where none of these factors existed anymore, that signing didn’t increase IQ, advance vocabulary, help with reading, or reduce tantrums, it wouldn’t bother me. Why? Because I would still be able to use sign as “a way to bond and connect with my son.” That’s it in a nutshell, and that’s the only reason I started to sign in the first place. In fact, my early research was more on techniques to signing, but as I was wrote for others, I learned about all the side benefits to signing. It never occurred to me that signing would delay speech. How could it? Crawling doesn’t delay walking.
I guess the list is useful in so much as it dispels the mischaracterizations surrounding signing, that is, that it might delay speaking which is patently untrue. This list is your answer to all the naysayers in your life who want to hack at your ankles as you sign to your baby – in-laws? Hopefully not, but perhaps even worse, you might have a spouse not so keen on the concept. Show them the list, talk to them and if they wont jump on board, then leave them to stew. Just remember to translate for them when baby is singing up a storm and they have “no idea what baby is saying!”