Tuesday, February 24, 2009

How to Sign BOOGERS and POOP in ASL

Come on! I'm not the only one who is curious about this. I've seen the way moms laugh and dads chuckle when I teach them the sign for POOP. So I know, you've thought about this to. And if you haven't, now you're curious.

How to sign POOP:
Make the "thumbs up" sign with you right hand. Grasp the thumb of the right hand with the left hand and close your fist around it. Pull your thumb down and out of your fist. Want to see a video? Visit ASLPro and look up POOPER SCOOPER in the main dictionary.

How to sign BOOGERS:
Use the 4 handshape to show a runny nose, then touch your face to show where it is on the face. No video for this one, but thanks to Signing Time Moderator Jenml for the information.

What other "gross" signs do you want to learn?

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sign Language iPhone App from Signing Time

I have been overtly drooling over all my friends' and coworker's iPhones. Imagine what I could do with one of those...Twitter all day, keep up-to-date with the latest on Facebook, and learn sign language.

Yes, sign language. Signing Time just introduced an iPhone Application that uses flashcards and video clips to teach American Sign Language. The signs taught are from the videos My First Signs and Playtime Signs.

I can't try this product out (unless someone wants to give me an iPhone to review. Hint. Hint.) If you purchase it, let the rest of us know what you think.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Raising a Signing Baby: 22 Months - Four Letter Words

At 22 months, Munchkin was talking in 1-6 word combinations, but not everything was easy to understand. I still needed clarification on "fork" and "fox." They both sounded incredibly like a 4-letter-word! When I wasn't sure what she was saying, I asked her to clarify her word with signs. Or, if she was simply pointing and grunting, I would ask her to "Use your words or your signs/hands."

Munchkin was also signing in multi-word combinations and mixing signs and words together to communicate. She continued to learn new signs all the time. A couple days after learning the sign, SUNSET, I heard her call out "Sunset!" Of course, I ran to enjoy the experience with her.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Teaching the Alphabet and Spelling in Sign Language

I began teaching my daughter the alphabet when she was around one year old. I purchased sponge bath letters for her to play with (chew on). I also posted the letters with pictures on the wall. We would walk down the long line of letters and say/sign the letter and say/sign the illustration. A - apple, B - ball, etc. In retrospect, I would have taught her the letter sounds rather than the names to begin with, but...that's another post.

Bath time has always been a big signing/alphabet time for us. Recently, I was inspired to start writing letters/words on my daughters belly while she is in the tub. She is a little over two and a half. She loves it and tells me what to write. Sometimes I fingerspell it and then write it, and vice versa. She'll try writing letters on her belly, too. It's great, because even if the letter isn't perfect and is squiggly and messy, we'll never know, because you can't see it! So, she can practice the motion and develop more control without any "help" from me. "Hmmm...that's a T? Why don't you draw a straight stick then a horizontal stick, like this?" See, it's much more fun this way.

The other day, I was sweeping the floor outside the bathroom door when I heard her spelling. I peaked in and she was drawing letters on her belly while saying the letters. And the letters were perfect...I think.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Study Looking for Baby Signers 8-18 Months Old

If you are interested in helping out in a study on language acquisition in signing babies, please read the request from researcher Greta Mueller. I completed the questionnaire yesterday. It was long, but very simple. You simply marked a box if your child understands a word or speaks a word. It is a long list of words, though, so give yourself a little time to complete it. At the end of the words, it asks a few questions, like how did you learn to sign, how often do you sign with your child, and if you watch DVDs like Baby Einstein or Brainy Baby. The only personal information requested is a pseudonym for your child and his/her birth date. If you want the results emailed to you, you will need to provide an email address. That's it.

Email from Greta Mueller:

Dear mothers,

as dedicated mothers who care about the wellbeing of their children, I would like to ask you to participate in my survey. My name is Greta Mueller and I study psychology at the University of Trier in Germany. I study language development and early communication skills in children. For this reason I am looking for mothers of 8-18 months old children from USA and Canada who are practicing baby signing and willing to complete an online questionnaire about this topic. It takes about 25-40 minutes to complete the questionnaire. I ensure that I will keep your answers in confidence. Your data serves scientific purposes only and will not be misused.


For any further information please feel free to contact me.

Thank you very much, Greta

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Language Acquisition in Signing and Non-Signing Children

I found this chart on the Baby Sign Shine blog. It compares the language acquisition of signing and non-signing babies and toddlers. My daughter signed her first word at 7.5 months. She was saying her first word by 9 months. She signed her first two-word sentence at 13 months and used at least 250 signs by 18 months. At 2.5 she knows all her letters, and some of their sounds.

Language Acquisition of Hearing Children from Baby Sign Shine

AgeNon-ASL ChildASL Child
6-8 months - Signs first word
9 months Understands simple words (mom & dad) Signs up to 75 signs
10 months Says first word Understands signed phrases
12 months One or more real words spoken Real words spoken
Signs 2-3 word phrases
Can sit & watch a picture book signed
18 months Understands simple phrases
Says 20-50 words
Uses 2 word phrases
Says 30-70 words
Uses 2-5 word phrases
Looks at picture book with Mom
24 months Says at least 150 words
Can sit & listen to a picture book
Says at least 150 words
Can understand everything that is said
3-5 years Can understand everything that is said
Says 1000-2000 words
Knows 10 Letters
Says 1000-2000 Words
Reads a picture book with a little help
Knows all the Letters

Saturday, December 13, 2008

ASL Signs for Baby and Toddler at Christmas

There's just something fun about holiday baby signs. The pudgy hands signing about Christmas and lights and Santa. I love it. When my daughter was 1 1/2, Santa Claus visited her daycare. I popped in to see her meet him, and I'm glad I did. She studied him for a minute and then signed "FIREFIGHTER." Her favorite book at the time was, "Who Said Red." One of the pages shows a red fire engine with Santa hanging off the back.

Here is a video with Rachel Coleman of Signing Time showing you a few holiday signs: HAPPY HOLIDAY, MERRY CHRISTMAS, CHRISTMAS TREE, SANTA CLAUS, HAPPY HANUKKAH, HAPPY NEW YEAR. Enjoy!

You might also want to look up: LIGHT, DECORATE, DEER, PRESENT, GIFT, JESUS, and ELF.

What Can Smart Baby Sign Language Blog do for You?

How can Smart Baby Sign Language help you sign with your baby or child? Feel free to ask me any questions. If I can't find a reliable source, I'll poll those who know. What else would help you: activities to teach sign language, ways to use sign language to teach reading, reviews of sign language products, etc.?

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