What are the most useful signs you use? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So far we use eat, drink, more, milk (for nurse), help, and all done. At this point I don't want to add things like please or thank you. I'm not concerned with manners as much as I'd like him to be able communicate his needs. So what other signs do you find helpful for your LO to communicate their needs to you?

I've been trying to sign "hurt" but he is usually so angry or upset when he gets hurt that he isn't really wanting to pay attention to my hands. He just signs "milk" and screams.
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#2 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 02:46 PM
 
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Dirty. It's helped to stop her from touching things like the trash or shoes, and she can also let me know when she needs a diaper change

Carrie~ wife to Ryan, and finally mama to Emmery (1/15/09) via IVF after 3 1/2 years TTC!
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#3 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 04:17 PM
 
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I am looking at DD1's 16 months list of signs here...
She had about 30 signs then, but the most useful ones in addition to the ones you listed are:
Stop. (but I think it only makes sense if you also teach Go with it)
Hot!
Water. (Was extremely useful to avoid the tantrum of a thirsty toddler at 3am )
and maybe...
Cheese Cookie Cracker

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#4 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 04:24 PM
 
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Stop, go, wait, hot, cold. Also kinds of food (cheese, banana, crackers, etc) for when they want a specific food.

We see the sign for outside a lot too!

Oh, and bath!

Me , DH , Emmy (5/08), and new baby Tilda (1/10)
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#5 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 04:44 PM
 
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In addition to some the previous posters listed, my 18-month-old uses these signs fairly frequently, and we find them useful for everything from conveying information to keeping her entertained in the grocery store: hungry, baby, cat, dog, cereal, cracker, car, bus, ball, moon, book, ice cream, and help.

"Hot" is definitely a useful one. She even warns me now that the oven is hot!
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#6 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 06:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Great ideas!! Dirty is great. He loves getting into things he should not, and dirty will be very useful (hopefully!). Lots of others mentioned will be good to add as well. Thanks!
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#7 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 06:48 PM
 
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Up, Down, Hungry...

BATH is especially popular in our house as my daughter won't relent once she has decided it is bath time.
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#8 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 07:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CozMama View Post
Up, Down, Hungry...

BATH is especially popular in our house as my daughter won't relent once she has decided it is bath time.
Bath was actually DS's first word. We don't need the sign. He screams it, starts heading up the stairs as soon as dinner is over, and continues yelling it until I start the water.
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#9 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 09:07 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biscuits & Gravy View Post
So far we use eat, drink, more, milk (for nurse), help, and all done. At this point I don't want to add things like please or thank you. I'm not concerned with manners as much as I'd like him to be able communicate his needs. So what other signs do you find helpful for your LO to communicate their needs to you?

I've been trying to sign "hurt" but he is usually so angry or upset when he gets hurt that he isn't really wanting to pay attention to my hands. He just signs "milk" and screams.
This made me chuckle because my ds does the same sometimes. The really helpful ones are all of the above. We do use hot, bath/shower, poop, lots of signs for animals and other objects...and ds just sweetly reminded me that he has a sign for just a little bit of milk. Haha. It started quite a while ago, when he would ask for milk for comfort and I was in the middle of something I would with my fingers make the little sign and tell him a little bit of milk. Now it is a regular part of his signing vocabulary!

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#10 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 09:18 PM
 
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For my DD it was potty, dirty, drink, and anything food related. Also light, bath, moon, toothbrush, love.... She speaks really well for not quite 2 and I've slacked way off on the signing, but I do keep some of them going.
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#11 of 18 Old 02-02-2010, 10:00 PM
 
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I second "Dirty" - hand under the chin, except DS does it on his tongue which kind of defeats the purpose if he's just touched something dirty, but at least he gets it when we're pointing at the cat box or something like that. 'Water' is also another great one.

I would also suggest one or two signs for things your DS would be interested in, like 'cat', 'dog', 'music', or 'book'. My DS started signing with 'dog' because he really likes them and wanted me to know that he had seen one. And now every time he hears music he signs while dancing because that's what he's into.

Using signing as a tool for useful communication is great, and it's important to remember that DS will want to 'talk' about the fun things in his life too.
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#12 of 18 Old 02-03-2010, 01:50 PM
 
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Some my daughter used that I found helpful:
Sleepy
As PP said... things in her environment she was interested in (cat, dog, book, slide etc)
Potty (we ECed)
Poop (she would sign potty for pee and poo for poo. :P)
Car

I actually spent a lot of time on an online video ASL dictionary, and got lots of ideas there.

Me: Shannon (33) mom to DD Everly born May 9, 2007 and Maisie born May 26
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#13 of 18 Old 02-03-2010, 03:03 PM
 
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more , milk , baby, all done/gone and horse are the only ones we have down so far

Jeana Christian momma to 4 sons Logan 18, Connor 15, Nathan 6, and bonus baby Jack 1
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#14 of 18 Old 02-03-2010, 10:02 PM
 
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"scared" explained a lot for us. sleep was useful, too.
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#15 of 18 Old 02-03-2010, 11:25 PM
 
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Used the most often: more, eat, water, full, various animal signs (horse, cow, etc.), various food signs (apple, banana, grapes, etc.), ball, airplane, bath, up, down, shoes...

Color signs helped him learn colors...

Rebekah , single working mom to Micah (04.12.2007)
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#16 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 02:43 PM
 
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Up and down were much used at our house.

The sweetest sign that hasn't been mentioned yet: moon
DD loves the moon and loves being able to tell me that she sees it.
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#17 of 18 Old 02-06-2010, 12:03 AM
 
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The signs that my son used most often were milk, eat, drink, more, please, thank you, all done, sleep and help.

Lindsay - Mum to Logan (May 3, 2007), Graysen (June 26, 2009) and welcoming somebody new in September 2011!
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#18 of 18 Old 02-06-2010, 12:57 AM
 
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Diaper if you're using them, DS sometimes uses that to say he needs a change.

Dog was one of his most used signs, he seems to love dogs and pointing them out everywhere. One day I'd taken him over to the gym, and as we were returning to our car we heard a dog barking in the yard nearby. He signed dog and we went looking for it, but couldn't find it / see it through the fences. So I took him over to a local pet store and let him look at a few dogs there.

As he got bigger and our own vocabulary grew, I started talking to him about the weather. Rain was one of his early words, I wasn't sure he knew what it was until we walked out on our back porch in the rain, and he started both signing it and saying it. Cloud was also a good one.

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