If you haven’t heard of Signing Time, you should check it out. It has an inspiring background story, and the research behind preverbal signing in hearing children can be quite compelling. Though they are oblivious to all of that, my boys just really enjoy it, and that’s why we’ve watched many episodes at our house. It’s a fun and dynamic mix of vocabulary, song, and sign.
One of the songs I use most from the series is “Magic Words”. You can download it from iTunes. The only signs you need to know as you sing along are “please”, “share”, “your turn“, “my turn” (like “your turn” but pointing to self with thumb), and “thank you“. All pretty easy signs, even for the signing inept like myself (though the way Rachel teaches the signs on the program is better than the links I gave you here). The children love singing and signing the song. It’s great for reinforcing the social skill of using polite words and being kind to others, while at the same time teaching about another form of communication (sign).
I don’t know that sign language will make your children brilliant, but any time you’re reinforcing language skills and symbolic thinking (sign) there will be cognitive benefits. And as you’ll find if you read Rachel’s amazing story, her first goal was just to give other children a working social vocabulary for when they meet someone like her daughter, Leah. That’s a goal I can certainly get behind!
For more mail themed activities, check out the Valentines, Friends, and Communication Unit here!
Photo by dialog_.
Love signing time! My 5 year old has some hearing loss that wasn’t diagnosed until she was 2. It saved us because it was the only way she could communicate until she got “caught up” with all of the speech sounds that she was finally hearing with her hearing aids. (Plus when things get too crazy or loud at the dinner table, we sometimes declare a “signing only” dinner. It makes for a more peaceful mealtime.)
Thanks for sharing that, Melissa!