Friday, October 2, 2009

31 for 21...day 2

We are into day 2 of Down syndrome awareness month. Today I want to share a little bit about Malachi and his love/hate relationship with sign language. As a parent of a child with Down syndrome, I understand the importance that sign language will play in Malachi's development. His speech will be delayed, so sign language will be vital to his communication skills. We started teaching Malachi sign language about 3 months ago. It has been a VERY slow process and at times it seemed hopeless. We would do the signs for more, eat, milk, drink and all done constantly and never saw any effort for Malachi wanting to do it. Then one day he started signing more...and then a few weeks later he started signing milk...we are still working on eat and dog, he will do it about 50% of the time. It has been so fun to watching him communicate a few basic needs with us. We will continue to work on sign language. A great resource we have found is the Signing Time DVDs. Malachi and I watch one once a week and pick a few new signs to add to our list. Its a fun video which incorporates sign language with songs. If you haven't seen or heard of it, go check it out, you'll be hooked. Sign language is a great skill for kids without special needs to learn as well, since children can understand language before they can verbally speak it. Here is a little video of Malachi showing off his skills...

Sorry, he is not wanting to participate right now, check back later for a video!!

5 comments:

Lianna said...

My son Gabe is completely hooked on Signing Time. He loves it so much that sometimes he refers to Leah, Alex and Rachel, (and Hopkins too!) as our family members!

Does Malachi ever sit with you to watch YouTube videos? My husband and I found that the short videos on YouTube were quite helpful, too.

I think many kids with Down syndrome need sign language as the bridge to verbal expression. I also believe that sign language when used with written verbal cues helps our children read early. It's an amazing skill for all family members to use!

Emily said...

I have yet to purchase signing time... but we are working on some signs as well. It does feel like a very slow process, but it is so exciting and rewarding once they get it!

Tara said...

We are starting with the Signing Time dvds and I'm amazed with how quickly my other kids are picking them up. Mom is waaay behind, lol!

elizabethmauger said...

Michael and Megan LOVE signing time! We have them all on TIVO! Hopefully Marissa wil start signing too. Way to go Malachi

Kelly Zimm said...

Love, love, LOVE signing times!!
Was so happy I stopped by here-Malachi is growing like crazy!