:: Baby talk | Big Bear Grizzly ::
By BRIAN CHARLES
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
David Walding, left and Wyatt Porter, might not look like they are having a conversation, but these two know baby sign language. They two toddlers play and talk with their hands. (BRIAN CHARLES/Big Bear Grizzly)
Marilyn Vecchio is a pot of gold to mothers in the Valley. The Mothers on Mountain Project education coordinator helps mothers through difficult times. So it was appropriate that a rainbow appeared over Big Bear just minutes before her baby sign language class began on March 22.
Four women, three mothers and a grandmother ignored the intermittent rain showers and showed up at the Bear Valley Community Healthcare District Rural Health Clinic for the baby sign language class. The class is the third installment of Vecchio’s Baby’s First Year series. The classes teach parents skills to get through the first year of their newborn’s life.
Perhaps no skill in the class is more important than baby sign language. Babies want to communicate. Vecchio says if the frustration and crankiness often associated with toddlers can stem from the inability to communicate needs, she says. Baby sign language gives kids the tools to communicate with the world.
Baby sign language uses simple hand gestures for babies to communicate. Pinching together all five fingers and putting the hand to the mouth means the baby is hungry. Touching two index fingers together means the baby is hurt. Following the system in detail is not important, Vecchio says If the baby comes up with another sign for a word, let him or her use it. The key is getting the baby to communicate, she says. Continue