28 answers

Is Teaching Baby Sign Language at 15 Months Appropriate?

Hi,

I have a 15 month old son who recently started doing the sign for "more," which we had been teaching him for several months on and off (no consisntently). I'm not sure if he totally knows to sign more when he wants more, he does do it when we say the word more though. He is trying to talk too, but hasn't said a word in context correctly yet. Since he picked up on the "more" sign, should I start teaching him more words? I'm really only interested in "all done" "please" and "thank you". I didn't know if I should try to teach these or if I should just work on encouraging talking since he's 15 months now.

Thanks!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

https://www.babysigns.com/index.cfm?id=64

This is a site that describes a number of research studies showing the benefit of using sign language in young children. Most children don't start speaking unitl 18months or 2 years old. the most important thing is to use both verbal language and sign language together.

My 2 year son was not speaking more than just mama and dada. We started a toddlers sign language class and he started communicating with signs right away and was speaking all the words to match the signs within a couple of months. As his verbal language grew, we stopped using the signs.

take care, S.

Kids are preprogrammed for language learning up until about age 8. You could teach him sign, as well as Russian, Chinese, French, etc. if you wanted to. The brain is a phenomenal thing. The more language he learns, the more synopses are formed in the brain--connections that make everything easier later. So yes, teach him sign and talk to him and play music for him. Input, input, input. Don't miss this opportunity.

I would work on words, not signing. Although children can do it, I have seen a couple of my girlfriends do signing with their children and both of them experienced a great delay and speech.

Good luck!

More Answers

you should go ahead and teach the signs with the real words. They say that when teaching signs you actually end up saying the words more often. As a result your son may start using the words sooner. It can't hurt to teach words in any form. I would recommend trying to teach other signs until he has developed the skills to say words. Other each ones are fan, bird, flower (sniff), milk, or eat. Check it out online and you can get true ASL signs or make up your own that work for your family. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

Kids are preprogrammed for language learning up until about age 8. You could teach him sign, as well as Russian, Chinese, French, etc. if you wanted to. The brain is a phenomenal thing. The more language he learns, the more synopses are formed in the brain--connections that make everything easier later. So yes, teach him sign and talk to him and play music for him. Input, input, input. Don't miss this opportunity.

It's always appropriate to teach him something new. Sign language is just like any other language. I teach my kids more signing and they are 3 and 4. While signing as a baby is helpful, signing as they grow older is still impressive: they know 2 languages. Helps with brain development, vocabulary, expression... I have a deaf sister in law, but I would be teaching my kids to sign (and learning myself) because I think it's a cool thing to know.

Absolutely! We started sign language with both our kids around 9 months. The both picked up basic "words" quickly, we had to be consistant with them of course. We have 16 month old girl and she signs "more", "milk", "juice", "hungry", "tired/nap", "please" (when she wants something), she's working on "diaper" for when she has poopy pants. They know what they want or need, you're just giving them a tool to help communicate what it is. Eventually they will start using the word with the sign too. With our son (now 4), his first words were the ones he signed. Stick to the basics, be consistant, do a sign a week, they will pick it up!

Absolutely. I started teaching my twin girls signs early on (in addition to reading to them every day and narrating everything I do all day long) and they are 20 months old now with an incredible vocabulary of close to 400 words, speaking in sentences, singing full songs, and they know their ABCs and can count up to 20. I am sure signing had something to do with it. We don't use it in excess, but there is a wonderful and popular video series called Baby Signing Time and Signing Time which is absolutely fantastic if you let your child have screen time. We don't have tv, but we do allow some time to watch these videos and I learn with them and reinforce all the time in daily life. I think it has helped their language development, in addition to the reading and narrating I mentioned as well as providing choices so my kids learn the word of the thing they want (like sweet potatoes instead of corn). There are so many words that will be helpful if your little one can communicate them to you..I would say go for it!

Do both, he will speak when he is ready to speak, signing will not slow down the process but it does make communication alot less frustrating. 15 months is the beginning of the word explosion, soon he will be signing and talking so much he will be carrying on full conversations with you. Its a fun day when that happens.

I taught my son those same four signs at about the same age and it helped him ALOT with working on his manners! He is a very polite two year old now, everyone comments on how polite he is. And there is no visable harm in teaching your child some basic signs.

I would work on words, not signing. Although children can do it, I have seen a couple of my girlfriends do signing with their children and both of them experienced a great delay and speech.

Good luck!

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