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How To Learn Sign Language

Sign Language Helps Babies Communicate With Parents Earlier


AND OUR EXPERT SAYS YOUR WINTER BIRDFEEDERS ARE ACTUALLY EXTRA FOOD. THEY ARE NOT KEEPING ANY BIRDS HERE WHO WOULDN’T NORMALLY STAY BUT THEY MAKE IT EASIER IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION, EMAIL IT TO HEATHER BY GOING TO WWW.WCCO.COM/LINKS. HAVING A BABY CAN BRING A LOT OF ANXIETY TO ANY NEW PARENTS. MONEY WORRIES, SLEEPLESS NIGHTS, CRYING. BUT WHAT IF YOU COULD COMMUNICATE BEFORE THEY CAN TALK? BABY SIGN LANGUAGE HAS BECOME INCREASINGLY POPULAR. IT USED TO BE TAUGHT ONLY IF A CHILD WAS DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING BUT NOT ANYMORE. EIGHT REDDIT TALKED TO AN EXPERT ABOUT HOW SIGN LANGUAGE MAY BENEFIT YOU AND YOUR BABY FOR YEARS. DO YOU WANT FOOD? MORE? OKAY. Reporter: IT’S SNACK TIME. BABY REYNA USES BASIC SIGN LANGUAGE TO TELL HER PARENTS WHAT SHE WANTS. SHE CAN HEAR JUST FINE. THE BABY WILL START CRYING TO LET YOU KNOW THEY WANT SOMETHING. SIGNING IS JUST A WAY FOR THEM TO BE MORE SPECIFIC. Reporter: THE 15-MONTH-OLD DIDN’T FUSS OR CRY THROUGHOUT OUR ENTIRE INTERVIEW. SHE WOULD SIGN MORE FOOD, MORE WATER. SHE EVEN USED THE SIGN FOR LIGHT, A NEW ONE AS WE SET UP EQUIPMENT. WE ARE TEACHING HER BANANA. WE ARE TEACHING HER MORE SPECIFIC FOODS. Reporter: BABY SIGN LANGUAGE FOR HEARING CHILDREN WAS STUDIED IN THE 1800S BY A YALE PROFESSOR BUT IT DIDN’T REALLY TAKE OFF UNTIL THE 2000’S. AT THE TIME SIGNING WAS JUST COMING OUT. Reporter: LEE WAS DESPERATE FOR A WAY TO CALM HER NEWBORN TRIPLETS BACK IN 2007. SHE TAUGHT THEM BABY SIGN LANGUAGE AND SAYS PEOPLE WERE AMAZED AT HOW CALM HER BABIES WERE. WE DIDN’T HAVE THE TERRIBLE TWOS. SOME CRYING BUT NEVER FROM FRUSTRATION OR LACK OF BEING ABLE TO TELL ME WHAT THEY NEEDED. Reporter: ON TOP OF YOUR BIRTHING, NURSING, CPR TRAINING AND OTHER CLASSES, YOU CAN FIND A PLETHORA OF SIGN LANGUAGE CLASSES. REYNA’S PARENTS USED — USED A CENTER IN ADINA. YOU ARE HELPING BUILD BRAIN CENTERS. Reporter: THE BASICS HAVE BEEN TAUGHT HERE FOR ALMOST 20 YEARS. BABIES DEVELOP SIGN MOTOR SKILLS EARLIER THAN SPEECH BUT SKEPTICS WORRY SIGNING WILL INHIBIT THE A BABY — THE BABY’S ABILITY TO WALK BUT A 20 YEAR STUDY FOUND THAT WAS NOT TRUE. THEY FOUND BABIES UP — BABIES EXPOSED TO SIGNING TALK SOONER AND THE FIRST WORDS THEY SAY GENERALLY ARE SIGNS THAT THEY KNOW. Reporter: AND THE BENEFITS DON’T START — STOP THERE. AS A CHILD WENT TO SCHOOL THEY WOULD SCORE AN AVERAGE OF 12 POINTS HIGHER ON IQ TESTS AND 20 POINTS HIGHER ON SATS SO ANYTHING YOU CAN DO FOR YOUR CHILD AS AN INFANTS THAT WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE AS A TEENAGER IS A GOOD THING. SLEEP. TEDDY BEAR. Reporter: REYNA HAS ALREADY STARTED TALKING AND HER FIRST WORD WAS STILL MOM. ONLY TIME WILL TELL IF SHE SEES BENEFITS AT A LATER AGE. SHE HAS TRIED SIGNING TO THE DOG. SHE ASKS THE DOG THINGS. I DO THINK A LOT OF PARENTS ARE VERY SAVVY ABOUT YOU KNOW WHAT THINGS ARE GOING TO HELP MY CHILD DEVELOP AND WHAT THINGS ARE GOING TO HELP MY CHILD GROW AND LEARN, AND SO A LOT OF TIMES PARENTS TAKE BABY SIGNING BECAUSE IT’S GOING TO BE BENEFICIAL FOR THEIR CHILD. Reporter: KATE RADDATZ, WCCO 4 NEWS. SUSAN SAYS A TIP TO START IMPLEMENTATION IS DON’T TRY UNTIL THEY ARE AT LEAST SIX MONTHS OLD. START WITH JUST ONE OR TWO SIGNS UNTIL THEY GET THE HANG OF IT AND THEN ADD MORE. WE HAVE MORE INFORMATION AT WWW.WCCO.COM/LINKS. REMEMBER WHEN WE DID IT WITH SAM? DID YOU DO IT WITH YOUR THREE? NO BUT I REMEMBER WHEN OUR TWINS WERE BORN, THE SMALLEST, THE FIRST THING I SAW WAS THIS. IT WAS LIKE GIRL POWER. THAT WAS MY FAVORITE — FIRST

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