And hand in hand with that is learning how to interpret their body language and their first words, which are limited by their physical development – some sounds won’t even be possible for them to make for years.
Which is why I’m a big fan of using baby sign language to help babies communicate with us easier, because it gives them the ability to express things to us that they can’t yet say.
We started teaching our kids basic baby sign language as infants, and it made some aspects of parenting so much easier for us, as our kids could clearly communicate when they were hungry or thirsty or wanted more. And because we also did infant potty training (elimination communication) with them, our kids learned how to tell us when they needed to go, via sign language, and they were much less likely to have ‘accidents’ because of it.
There are a bunch of good books on baby sign language, many of which might be found in your library, but the internet is also an excellent source of information. I just found out about a great new resource for learning baby sign language, with free flash cards and charts, a dictionary of baby sign language, and even instructional videos – all for free.
Check out BabySignLanguage.com and start learning today.