God recently reminded me of a valuable way to communicate with our children.
When Connor was 2 years old, at the urging of one of his therapists, we introduced him to ASL signing. He didn’t have a lot of language at the time and the therapist’s shared with us that if you give your child a way to communicate with you it can lessen their frustration.
So, the first thing we did was introduce him to the children’s show, Signing Time. He instantly loved the show. It was very animated with lots of music, which made it fun to follow along. We would watch it with him and sign along as well. This became a fun way for us to interact with him. He learned to count, his ABC’s, words and sentences all through signing.
Over time Connor’s language did develop and he is very verbal today. Signing just became a fun second way for him to communicate.
Fast forward to this past weekend at champion’s club. A little boy in Connor’s class, who just started to learn to sign, who isn’t completely verbal yet, started getting upset, wanting his mom. One of Connor’s teachers turned to him and said, “Connor, can you sign, Mommy will be back soon for him?” Connor did several times and the little boy settled down and went back to playing.
Both us, the little boys parents, and the teacher’s rejoiced together over how the boys had communicated with one another.