Sam uses quite a few signs; milk, dad, all done, bird, dog, eat etc. He's been adding to the list quite quickly. I tried doing the Signing Time videos with him, but not being big TV watchers, it just never occurred to me to stop what we were doing and watch them. We do, however, read a lot of books, so I decided that the best way to help him learn new signs would be to make a picture book.
I bought five blank board books and printed up a bunch of images on full sheet labels. Then I just stuck the labels onto the books and trimmed the edges. I put two books together so in the end I had three; two fat ones and one skinny one.
For the covers I used images from Honeylux. It's a beautiful shop with lovely letterpress cards and images. The images are of hand shadow puppets, which I thought were perfect for signing books.
Here are a few of the pages:
Shoes and sleeping.
Milk and outside.
One of the things that bugged me about the signing videos was that all the pictures they showed of "milk" were of bottles and big glasses of milk. Sam doesn't even know what milk looks like! To most of the world's babies, milk is pretty much synonymous with mama. In fact, when we used to ask Sam "Who's that?" and point to me, he would do the sign for milk! I love this picture of a sweet little girl, happily nursing and looking adoringly at her mama.
Cow and drink.
Banana and bird.
Sam loves his books and we love being able to communicate with him. I can't remember the last time he cried to let us know he was hungry; he just does his signs or points to what he wants. He's also able to tell me things like that he's thinking of his dad when he's away at work, or he hears a dog barking, or he sees a pretty flower. It's really wonderful for him to be able share his thoughts and for us to have a glimpse into his world.