Time to Sign! {Teaching My Baby Sign Language}


I have to brag on my son a little bit. He’s 13 months old, and recently signed ‘banana’ and ‘potty’ in sign language.

I am over the moon proud and excited!

It’s very important to me that my son be bilingual. My Spanish is rough, though I know enough to get by and plan on teaching him what I can. My signing skills are about as bad, but thanks to learning a few words in elementary school and a few more in Del Mar’s College for Kids program, I have a little knowledge and experience I’d love to pass along.

Before he was even born, I bought baby signing books. Baby Sign Language Book- Corpus Christi Moms BlogMy husband and I would sit around at dinner, trying to teach him simple words like ‘mommy,’ ‘daddy,’ and ‘hungry.’ When my husband sang the baby the ABC song, I would sign it. We had very little luck, in my opinion, aside from entertaining ourselves. We were hopeful he would learn though, especially considering that it’s probably really frustrating for babies to want things, but not yet know how to communicate.

When I first mentioned wanting to teach my son sign language, there were critics. We were often laughed off. I’m not sure why, as babies are quick to learn signs like ‘hi’ and ‘bye bye,’ and no one gives it a second thought. It seemed learning sign language wouldn’t be any different.

Anyway, my husband and I recently got away for a rare date night and were fortunate enough to meet a local pediatrician. We started talking about our kids, and she was incredibly encouraging about the difficulties and challenges we were facing raising a strong willed and short tempered little boy. Then, she made one of the best recommendations we’ve gotten so far. She suggested Baby Signing Time videos.

I purchased Volume 1 of the Baby Signing Time videos on Amazon. Baby Signing Time DVDs- Corpus Christi Moms BlogUp until then, I was adamant that my son not watch television. But within a few days, we were enjoying cute sing along videos of little babies and toddlers signing to fun, silly songs that teach simple signs kids can use. My son was captivated. He would, and still does, curl up in my lap to watch and learn signing. He moves his hands and motions to mimic what he sees. Almost immediately, he was signing ‘baby’ to tell me he wanted to watch more Baby Signing Time. Within a week or so, he was signing words like ‘more’ and ‘eat.’ I bought Volume 2. In two to three weeks? He was signing ‘potty’ and ‘banana!’ That same afternoon, he signed ‘crackers,’ ‘eat,’ and ‘more’ all together… in context!

How amazing it was to know what my son wanted, but also to see how much he knew, despite being unable to say the words out loud.

As I was writing this post, I started to wonder if Corpus Christi has any local resources to help children learn sign language. And you know what? We do! Though I have no experience with them, the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Center of Corpus Christi offers baby signing classes and adult classes, as well as a sign camp for kids!

Watching your child learn is amazing. Seeing your kids pick up something so quickly can’t help but make parents proud. But something like this, which is so functional and helpful in getting my son to think, learn vocabulary, and tell us what he wants and needs without even being able to speak? It’s amazing and I love it! And the best part? So does he!

Have you tried teaching your kids sign language? What resources did you find helpful?

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Prior to starting Corpus Christi Moms Blog, Beth studied Marketing at Texas A&M University {Gig'em!} and earned her MBA from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi {Go Islanders!}. She spent her early career working local corporate gigs and teaching yoga before she, her husband, and their two kitty cat fur babies welcomed their son {2015}. Beth spends her days learning to balance life as a new mom. Despite being a native of Corpus Christi, she hates seafood but is always down for Mexican food and a good margarita! When she can, Beth loves reading, cooking something new, and sleeping.