We have come a long way and now it’s finally time to teach the techniques that make up the backbone to baby sign language. This means that we can start to apply some of the messages presented earlier. In this chapter we are going to cover the rules to signing, the mechanics of signing, as well as other important factors to signing such as remaining consistent. We also hit on some common sense rules like signing in your baby’s field of vision, spending time on baby’s level and why it’s important to sign in full sentences but why you shouldn’t bother signing each and every word in a sentence.
The key take-away to this chapter is that signing must be done repetitively and each time you sign a word, you should say it out loud. We also cover how signs need to be repeated throughout the day rather than setting time aside. We’ll also look at signing in context and why it helps baby understand the meaning of the word and reinforces signs. Next, we look at ways to identify teachable moments, how to get your baby’s attention, emphasizing words and other ways to make teaching signing more efficient.
When teaching signs, you always want to be enthusiastic and reward your baby with excitement when they finally sign back, even if it happens by accident. More on this in the pages that follow!
First, let’s review the fourteen rules to teaching baby sign language.