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Getting started with Signalong

Teach your child to communicate their needs by using Signalong, a programme which uses signs and words together.

Children Signing

The aim of Signalong is to help children acquire language skills and aid where there is communication difficulties.

It can be a great way to boost language development in very young children and help children with speech, language and learning difficulties express their wants, needs and desires.

Here are some top tips for signing with your child.

  • Every sign should be accompanied by the spoken word – Ideally signing should be used in a natural every day occurrence, in the same way as talk
  • Face your child so they can see your hands, signs and facial expressions
  • Always use real objects or real situations when introducing new words and signs
  • Signing is about emphasising the main meaning – never sign every word – sign key words only
  • Learn some really useful signs. You can follow our Facebook and Twitter pages here where we share how to do a new sign each week
  • Make it fun! Start with learning signs to words in your child’s favourite book or nursery rhyme
  • Signing vocabulary development should be child led –using relevant appropriate signs based on your child’s needs.

Remember signing does not stop your child from talking and can decrease their frustration of not being able to make themselves understood.

If you would like to gain an accredited qualification using Signalong you can book your course here.

If you would like to learn to sign with your baby please book here.

If you would like to know more about Signalong – The Communication Charity you can visit their website here.

Teddy Crossed arms, working arm in front, hands on opposite shoulders, mime cuddling soft toy
Teddy – Crossed arms, working arm in front, hands on opposite shoulders, mime cuddling soft toy*
Yes Working closed hand (palm forward, pointing up) by side of head, bends down and up in a nodding action
Yes – Working closed hand (palm forward, pointing up) by side of head, bends down and up in a nodding action*
To Eat Working bunched hand (palm back, pointing up) taps twice at the working side of mouth
To Eat – Working bunched hand (palm back, pointing up) taps twice at the working side of mouth*

*Kindly reproduced by permission of Signalong

By Sue Brown

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