Baby sign language saved my sanity and built my business
Now I teach new mums how easy it is to communicate with their baby
I’m a mum to four daughters, all of whom are at school and excelling in reading, writing and literacy, an avid user and promoter of baby sign language, and a sports mad footy lover who played 3 seasons for the Darebin Falcons.
Suffering from post-natal depression after the birth of B1, I was desperate to find ways to be a calmer mum. Attending a Child and Baby Expo, I purchased a book and DVD on baby signing, started learning and teaching my baby.
Like most people, I was sceptical (and my hubby even more so), but when B1 started signing back within a month, we were baby signing converts!
Over the past 10 years, I’ve honed my baby signing skills through running numerous workshops with mothers groups, and now love teaching new mums how they can communicate with their baby.
The Baby Babble story
After learning and using baby sign language with all four of my girls, I know how amazing it is. But most new parents don’t even know this exists. My aim is to empower new parents and carers with this fantastic communication tool.
And trust me, babies love to communicate. They’re smart little critters – they just can’t verbally tell you that! By teaching your baby how to use sign language, it reduces their frustration (and the typical temper tantrums) as they learn how to tell you exactly what they want – milk, nappy, cuddles…
How baby sign language worked for my family
B1: Starting at 11 months old, it took B1 a month to start signing back to us. She learnt new signs as quickly as we could teach her and all her love of language is was very evident in her speech clarity and breadth of vocabulary, with constant comments from people regarding her speech. Now almost through her secondary school journey, she is working towards a career as a writer and artist, such is her love for language and reading.
B2: Starting at four months old, it took B2 until seven months to copy the sign for milk. Another couple of months on, and she realised that she could actually ask for her own milk by using her sign language. At 13 months old, she was using 15 signs and speaking 10 words clearly. At two2 years of age, she spoke clearly in full sentences and we no longer needed the sign language. Now at 13, she certainly has a very broad vocabulary…
B3: With my hubby being the primary carer at this stage, signing was a bit more relaxed with ‘oops I forgot’ often being heard. We started signing at five months of age and we we’re consistent (a big part of successful signing). At 10 months, she finally started signing milk and slowly built to 50 signs at 18 months of age. Now, at 10, I ask her about her day and then need to be prepared to sit back for a very long winded response.
B4: We started signing milk and eat from around five months of age with our latest edition. By eight months she would copy signs and clearly understood a few signs, but really started using signing to communicate at 10 months. By two years old she is starting to speak in small sentences like “read book me” and using signs more when we don’t understand what she is saying. For example she would say “nook” for milk and use the sign as well. She is now seven and reading chapter books despite having a very interrupted start to her first two years of school due to lockdowns in Melbourne.
Want to learn how to translate baby babble?
I know how hard it can be to escape your kids and find time to do anything for yourself. That’s why I’m creating an online course to teach you how to use baby sign language, in the comfort of your own home, and at times that work for you. With easy to follow videos, PDFs and downloadable resources, you’ll soon be communicating with your baby.