Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Despite her normal hearing, Elena was still essentially “mute” for nearly the first 2 years of her life. Our speech therapist suggested we start using sign language. We bought a DVD, and was AMAZED at how easily the parents in the video could communicate with their babies—even very young babies. We also didn’t think it would be that simple, but since Elena was barely crying to communicate, we’d try anything. We started with the signs for “milk” and “more”, and later introduced “water”, “hi”, and “eat” on a regular basis. Around X months after we starting signing, Elena waived to me in the car. Or, I thought she waived, anyway. She definitely was trying to tell me something. Then she did the sign for “milk”, and waived, staring at me—I realized she had been signing “milk” and “water”, b/c she was thirsty! From there, she learned signs at an alarming rate—she signed over 60 words before beginning to speak. I would recommend sign language to EVERYONE. Elena started talking well when she was 20 months old, and shortly after that the signs dropped off as the spoken language progressed. I still occasionally sign to her, and she understands it, but replies vocally.

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