Have you ever considered teaching twins sign language?
Sign language can be taught from birth, and results from signing with
twins can be seen from as early as six months of age with consistent
Sign language has long been one of the ways that new parents teach their babies to express themselves well before they can verbalize their needs and wants. If you have twins, then you know how difficult it can be when both of your children are distressed, and simply do not have the skills to tell you what is wrong. Not to mention, the slower language development that many twins experience. Sign language could help, but it's also fun.
So, where do you begin?
When you want to start teaching sign language to twins, the earlier you
begin after their birth, the better results you will see within the
first two years of life. It is recommended to start signing to the
babies around 3 months of age. You do not have to know sign language
yourself to begin teaching it, since you will only use very simple signs
during the first years of life.
Signs for "drink" and "eat" are two of the most commonly used in their
You can easily pick up a book, DVD or even sign up for a class to get
started on these basic signs.
One of the key factors when you are teaching twins sign language is consistency. Even if each child is at a different skill level, you should be consistently working with each of them accordingly. Don't give up when this seems like too much, as the pay off is amazing. You will also want to keep their main words simple. Begin with one word, such as "mama," "dada" or "eat," and then move on to more complex signs when your twins are ready. There is no rush, and babies will learn quickly with consistency. You can also use more complex words and sentences, but remember that babies will not know what you mean any more than they would if you were speaking verbally.
The benefits are rather obvious. First, the level of communication and understanding between you and your children will increase dramatically. If you are working on teaching sign language when twins are very young, for example, less than six months old, do not expect results until the children are old enough to understand. Responsive signing can occur anywhere from six months to eighteen months of age. Be assured that teaching sign language does take a little time, but your children will eventually be able to sign back to you. If you are teaching sign language to twins who are visually impaired, make sure that they can feel your hands as you sign. Your child will be able to sign long before they learn to speak (this is especially true with boys), allowing you to understand your twins better and deal with their needs appropriately. Another amazing benefit of teaching twins sign language, whether they are hearing impaired or not, is that learning sign language at an early age has been linked to a higher IQ later in life.
When you have twins, you will have twice the work and will need all the
help you can get to manage your babies effectively. Teaching twins sign
language is one of the best ways to help them learn simple ways to
communicate their needs from an early age. When you do not have to guess
what your twins want or need, you can spend more time enjoying them and
less time trying to manage their care.
Check out Signing Families for help and support.
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