Baby Sign Language : A Child 's Only Form Of Communication Essay

1025 Words Oct 18th, 2016 5 Pages
Around 2000 there started a trend, new mothers were teaching their young children “baby sign.” Other moms told them they could teach their infants and toddlers, certain signs, such as “milk”, “diaper”, “juice”, etc., and would be able to communicate with their children. When introducing her book Baby Sign Language Basics, Montra Briant says “I was also intrigued by the idea of being able to communicate with my baby before she could talk – what would she say?” (2009, p . ix) The concept of gesture communication made many parents delighted that during the time when their child is unable verbalizing would be with fewer tantrums and tears. Baby Sign Language helps children who have yet to learn their expressive language develop yet communicate, reduce aggressive behavior, and may help develop a deeper language set. A newborn’s only form of communication is crying, as they develop they add cooing, pointing, and other hand gestures to their repertoire. As a result, teaching the child to use specific hand gestures as communication is natural. For that reason, most parents will teach their children to point at what they want or need to try to make life easier, although they may not use baby sign. Goldin-Meadow suggests that “imagistic and analogue gestures that accompany speech reflect thought and knowledge of the speaker/gesturer that is often not expressed in other more codified forms of communication” (as cited in Doherty-Sneddon, 2008, p. 4). With this in mind, pointing and…

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