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Baby signing with Milo

Tiny Talk

So, Milo’s dad and I had been thinking for a little while about signing for babies and whether or not to try this with Milo. My mum and I were also chatting about it the other day (she is partially deaf and beginning to think about learning BSL herself) and after a little web hunting she found Tiny Talk.

Based on British Sign Language it seems to have had very positive results with the babies that it’s used with. It can ease a baby’s frustration before they learn to talk as they are more able to communicate their emotions. It can also help with their speech and language development. This all sounds great – if only Milo had known how to sign when he was first born when his dad and I had no idea what we were doing!

Our Tiny Talk package

On a more personal note though, because my mum is partially deaf and struggles with multiple person conversation now, we are hoping that it will be a good introduction to us all to British Sign Language. We can then expand on what we know and learn properly how to sign. For Milo it will hopefully be an easy transition as he will have grown up with it. And his Auntie Gina can help him too as she can sign and is a speech and language therapist – so a great influence there. She also knows all the words to Wind the Bobbin – one nursery rhyme that falls out my brain constantly!

Anyway, we have to choose a small handful of words to start on with Milo. Here are ours:

hello and goodbye (waving – we already do this)

That seems plenty for now. He seems mostly keen on grabbing my hands as I do the signing at the moment, so I think it is going to take a while before he realises I am trying to communicate with him. We should start to see him responding and copying in about 4-6 weeks time, so I will post an update then. Once he has started getting the hang of his first handful of signs it should be much quicker for him to move onto the next lot which we think should begin with:

food (we may start using this now as he has just started weaning)

Has anyone else tried this? I’d be really interested to know how it has gone and if it has been fun.

*** Oh, and we’ve just heard that we can get on a local Chatterfingers group and today’s our first day (the first actual session was last week but we all had the lurgy so couldn’t go). I’ve heard that the signing is pretty much the same as Tiny Talk or at least adaptable and it’s a good chance for Milo to meet a few more babies too. Unfortunately there weren’t any Tiny Talk groups in our area or we would have done that perhaps. I’ll keep you posted on how we get on!

One Comment Post a comment
  1. This worked beautifully with my grandchildren. it really helped them to let us know when they were hungry, tired, thirsty, or hurt. They learned easily and quickly. Just remember that some children may have their own unique ‘signs’ that may seem quirky – just as they create some of their own unique words when they first vocalize. Your heart will melt the first time you ask if they hurt and they pull their ear to show you they have an earache ~ but wow ~ think how much faster you can get them to the doctor to ease the pain for your little one! You will learn (& they will to too) to respond to his needs so much quicker – that it really shortens that melt-down time when they understand that you know what they want, and presumably will get it for them quickly. have fun, Talula

    May 9, 2009

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