We all have seen or experienced first-hand a toddler having a tantrum in the middle of the store. While it could be simply an upset child not getting their way, it also could just be a frustrated child trying to convey a need with no means to do so. However, if that child had some way to convey an idea of what their need or want is, think of how much that could help them and you.
So, for the month of August, we will be focusing on language and communication skill building. To build and enhance these skills, we will be focusing on sign language. Knowing and utilizing sign language has many benefits besides just the major ability to communicate for nonverbal children. Sign language does not only allow a form of communication alleviating frustrations on you both, but also using sign language accommodates a variety of learning styles. While using sign language, you are supporting verbal linguistic, kinesthetic, and interpersonal learning styles by relaying information that you see, hear, and gain through movement. It builds pathways to the brain that support a stronger memory retention. Research also shows that teaching sign language actually speeds up speech development in children.
There are social and emotional benefits to teaching and learning sign language as well. When a parent is teaching and learning sign language with their child, it is a bonding experience, and it also allows them to communicate important information before they are able to speak. Children who are able to convey a want or need to someone before being able to speak develop a sense of confidence and less frustration knowing that they successfully conveyed vital information and that it was understood.
The signs that we learn this month will hopefully benefit not only your child but also yourselves by giving your child a way to communicate with you when they lack the words. I am super excited to see your child feeling confident and proud when they successfully identify an emotion or convey important information to myself and you.
Ms Amanda, Ms Kim, & Ms. Lindsey