Saturday, September 21, 2013

A Sign of the Times

I've been signing to Iyla since she was roughly 2-3 months old. Simple things like "more," "all done," "potty," & "milk." Wondering just if or when she might start communicating back.

Well, this little lady had another seemingly big jump in her mental development last week.

It was first evidenced by her nap boycotts. At least 4-5 different times last week she fought either her morning or afternoon nap. And by fought I mean she would seem super tired and ready to sleep (she was)- but after lying her down she would pop up to sit, playing and chatting and throwing pacis outside the crib for a good 30-40 minutes before trying to lie down again, then crying and deciding she did NOT want to sleep! At first I thought she was trying to eliminate a nap, but now I firmly believe this was a sign of a mental leap. Her little brain was/is so much on overdrive- processing all the new skills and observations in the world- that it is HARD to sleep!

During one of her nap boycotts.
 I tried to lull her to sleep in the Beco, with no success.

Iyla started waving hello and goodbye a couple of weeks ago- mostly to herself in the mirror. Now? She is a waving champ, happily signing hello and goodbye to most anyone she encounters.

Then this past week she started signing back "more" during mealtimes! She was quite pleased with herself, and delights in just how pleased BC and I are when she does it. Lots of proud smiles. She also has gotten good at showing the sign for "milk," though hasn't used it exclusively to ask for milk yet.

Knowing that Iyla adores her books, I really started working in earnest with her on the "book" sign after I saw her master "more." This sign is done by holding your hands together flat and open like a little book. I would show her the sign- take her own hands to do the sign- then show her again. She first began demonstrating it by opening and closing her hands without bringing them together:

First attempts at "book"

This lasted a couple of days, and it was clear she was doing it to ask to read! When I tried to show her how to put her hands together to correctly do the sign she would actively resist- basically saying: "mom- I got this- lay off!" Sure enough, soon after the initial 'book' signing attempts she started spontaneously doing it correctly with her little hands held together. She is SO proud of herself when she does it. Now when she starts to whine while looking at her books I tell her to "show Mama what you want"- and inevitably those little hands come together to sign "book." I have yet to catch it on camera, lest there be a tantrum with my delay in getting a book in her hot little hands!

She apparently knows gang signs too

All in all, amazing.

I'm now working on "kitty," "all done," and "potty" with her. It is so exciting to watch her GET how to communicate- and I am again in awe of our sweet, smart little girl!

Her sign for "adorable?"

1 comment:

  1. I had almost given up on signing when one day out of the blue things just clicked and Jett finally started signing "milk" instead of pulling my shirt down when he wanted to nurse. I haven't been as persistent with teaching him other signs but I was so happy when he could finally tell me when he wanted milk! I need to start teaching him more, things like "water" and "more" and "done" will be helpful when he masters those!
    I love that she signs for book!!!