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Baby Signing

What is Baby Signing?

Baby signing is a way of communicating with your baby before he or she can talk. By using simple signs alongside words, you can teach your baby a way of letting you know his or her emotions and needs.

What are the benefits of baby signing?

Babies can coordinate the muscles in their hands before they can control the muscles they need to speak. This means that from as young as seven months, they can make signs which you will be able to understand and respond to, reducing frustration for both of you.

How do I start?

Use signs which relate to the things you and your baby are doing, so that he or she can make a connection between the sign and what it represents. The most successful signs, not surprisingly, tend to be things like 'milk', 'eat', 'more' and 'bed'!

Books such as these Child's Play board books show you the basic words. All the signs are based on British Sign Language so can be understood by other carers and parents who sign as well. Signing can also lead to better communication between hearing and deaf or hard of hearing children.

Books available in your library

Starting off

Acredolo, Linda - Baby Signs: How to talk with your baby before your baby can talk

Kubler, Annie - My First Signs

Acredolo, Linda - Baby Signs for Animals

Lewis, Anthony - My First Animal Signs

Learning everyday signs

Acredolo, Linda - Baby Signs for Bedtime

Lewis, Anthony - Sign About Getting Ready

Lewis, Anthony - Sign About Meal Time

Lewis, Anthony - Sign About Play Time

Lewis, Anthony - Sign About Going Out

Sign Singalong

Kubler, Annie - Baa, Baa, Black Sheep

Kubler, Annie - Incey wincey Spider

Kubler, Annie - Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear

Kubler, Annie - Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

All of these books are avilable for loan, free of charge from Birmingham Libraries.

Staff in your local librarywill be happy to help you find books on Baby Signing, or you can make a reservation yourself using the online catalogue.

Useful websites

Find out more about baby signing for yourself

www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/somethingspecial/signs/babysigns - Video clips showing the basic signs.


Images reproduced by kind permission of Child's Play (International) Ltd, www.childs-play.com

Please note: We are not responsible for the content of other organisations' websites.

Children Under 5 in Birmingham Libraries
Booklist - positive images of children with hearing impairment
Spotlight: Library resources for deaf and hard of hearing children
When a book might help
Children and Young People with Special Needs