The mantra of teaching signing for babies is teach contextually and consistently. This is all good until we are faced with the practical details of signing. Baby sign language can often require two hands. The majority of us only have two of those and quite often one is busy holding, feeding and nurturing our little ones. How do we overcome this obstacle? How are we to sign contextually while we try to feed, or bathe our child?
After interviewing several baby sign language mamas I was able to determine that this seemingly overwhelming challenge has a very simple solution. A solution many of us are already using when it comes to teaching our little ones the basics.
Encourage the Montessori Method
If you are lucky enough to have older children the engagement of mixed-age groups is probably one of the most effective ways of teaching contextually. Recruit the help of a sibling and allow them to directly participate by signing to the baby during feedings, bathing time and play time.
Recruit the Help of Friends & Family
If you don’t have other children around as grandmas, grandaddies, daddies and friends to lend you a hand. Literally! They can help you with the task of lead the signing session.
Join or Coordinate a Baby Signing Play Group
Group activities will allow you to incorporate multimedia, signing songs, games and other amazing activities that will encourage social skills as well as communication skills. Your baby will be signing in no time and having loads of fun while learning.
Having extra hands will certainly help a great deal but if you don’t have that luxury do not be discouraged. I know numerous signing babies who have learned from the comfort of their high chair, jumperoo, swing and kindermat.