Thursday, February 24, 2011

Baby Sign Language FAIL

That's right, we totally bombed. I talked about starting baby sign language here about 8 months ago. I found it hard to learn BSL myself let alone remember to use it with Sweet Thing all the time. If I worked harder at it(and owned a BSL book, instead of borrowing from the library) it might become second nature. But I knew that this wasn't a life or death situation and I wasn't going to waste my time doing something I didn't like at the time.

I'm happy to report at 15 months old she has a booming vocabulary of over 35 words. She is very capable of communicating with the people around her. She understands so much more than she can say. I am pleased with the way she is communicating, even if she can't sign 150 words by now.

Every baby is different and develops at their own pace and though my daughter is thriving without it I wish I could see how she would have developed with the added bonus of knowing signs. There are still times when I wish I had followed through with it because she can get very frustrated when we can't quite figure out what she wants, but that subsides quickly once I realize the capable being she is.

All in all, she is learning new things everyday and I am constantly amazed at this little human we've created.

I know when I stopped trying to use baby sign language I felt like a...wait for it...a failure. I felt bad because I couldn't teach my daughter a second language. It's another one of those things that people will judge you about. Just like breast vs. bottle, just like circumcision vs. intact. Although it might not be quite as controversial, un-healthy or life-altering, mothers will judge you no matter what you do, which is really sad. Do what you feel is necessary, and don't pressure yourself to do sign language. It's just one more thing we shouldn't need worry about. Do 12 extra IQ points really make that much of a difference anyway? Ok, ok, maybe they do to some, but it's not going to change the love I have for my child. I'll always think she is the smartest kid in the world! You know, cause I'm biased and all!

Did anyone else try BSL and fail miserably? Or did it go well? Tell me about it!

5 lovely comments:

Mommy Kerin said...

Don't feel bad hun! I tried it with my kids and they didn't pick it up either and I even know real ASL! I did manage to get my littlest love to sign hungry and milk but that's all. :)

I Am Not Superwoman said...

We did BSL with our 3 yr old when he was young but this time around, too much going on w/3yr old to concentrate on it with our almost 10 mo old. Found you on a blog hop. Hope you can stop by my blog and follow back.

Shifty said...

I have an 11 month old and when she was 5 months she was so frustrated so I learnt and taught three signs: more, milk, all done (which I think I made up) those three signs saved us for a bit but she wants more now and I don't know them!! I made up 'want' so she could 'ask' for stuff but it has all degenerated into yelling and 'want' signed repeatedly Lol. I guess I will figure out more (also by borrowing from the same library!!)

Shifty said...

Oh and surprisingly my 3 1/2 yr old son LOVES the signs (which I never did with him) and is a Huge help in asking what she wants! My mom totally knocked the sign thing (and still the cloth diaper thing) until she saw a freak out end due to signs!

kayla said...

hiya, just flipping through your blog, seen you were a blogger from the canadian cloth diaper movement,
but anyways, we taught my first born bsl it was the best thing we couldve done, even though my husband at first thought it was the dumbest thing, and figured she wouldnt be smart enough to catch on. he will be the first one to tell you it was the best, it made for less complications in communication...until she couldnt understand why signing what she wanted didnt always get her what she wanted lol.
i cant remember when we started but it was before her first birthday,
and the one thing i found that helped us was flash cards! and this will sound silly but, the main signs you want to teach(and learn yourself) put up pictures in the main room where they will be used most, in your house. ours is in the kitchen.(and they are a great conversation starter for guests,if nothing else! our guests always left having learned something lol :))
never get discouraged, it takes some time for them to be able to catch on, you can start as early as you want, but it can be discouraging not having any response back from them.
hopefully you give it a shot with the new baby!