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Baby Sign Language: A Kind of Mimic Language

By Charles Hopkins Published 11/2/2006 | Kids & Teens

Are you a parent of an infant or a toddler who is yet to speak his first word? Have you ever wondered what goes on in the little head of your small child? Have you ever noticed what interests him most? Do you want to know what food he likes most? Havent you ever wished that the little one could speak so that you could be able to find out the reasons behind all his tantrums?

You may not know, but it is true that your child has the ability to communicate with you through gestures; only you have to polish up this ability of your child by training her in baby sign language. This will allow you to have a conversation with your child even long before she starts to speak properly. So hone your childs natural abilities to communicate. Teach your child sign language and turn your parenting experience into all fun and no stress. When a child is able to show you a piece of his mind his frustrations are reduced automatically. This provides the basis for a stronger parent child bonding. 

Teaching your child sign language is all fun and easy. You do not know but you have already taught your child some of the basic sign languages! Doesnt your child wave back at you when you say good-bye to him? Doesnt your baby stretch her arms upward to indicate that she wants to be picked up? Doesnt she tap on something or point towards something when she is asked to show some object or person?

Well, you have taught some of these gestures to her, while the baby has picked some of them up by instinct. For example, all of the babies all over the world will put their arms upwards when they ask their mothers to pick them up. But there are certainly some of the gestures that they have learned by watching you. Bidding good-bye by waving their hands is a good example of this mimicry.

How are the babies able to use gestures to communicate messages to you? This is because the babies just love to mimic. Whenever you are making some actions before her, she will invariably try to copy it. Now your baby can understand much more than you think she is able to. Her brain is matured enough to find the correlation between a spoken word and the gesture associated with it. But in order to help her find out this link, you have to repeat the sign once and once again as you speak out the word loudly and clearly.

But do not expect your six or seven month old baby to sign right back at you. Their motor skills are more matured than their vocal organs, but that does not mean that they will master the coordination between their hands and eyes as easily as an adult.

The signing ability depends on the degree of hand-eye coordination. Each baby takes different time to master this coordination. The babies adapt the signs in their own natural way and their coordination starts to improve as their motor skills develop.

In some cases however, the babies will not reproduce the signs the same way as you have demonstrated. They will rather show a simplified version of gestures. But the parents need to carry on with the original signing.

Do not give up your efforts if the baby takes some time to sign back. Be patient and rest assured, the mimic instinct in your child will make her respond back even if it takes a couple of weeks more.