So, you had a baby and now you’d really like to know what he or she is thinking —or really, even more basically — wants. We’ve all been there. Get one step closer to mind-reading capabilities by learning to sign with your baby. Baby sign language helps parents and caregivers communicate with children as young as four months old, and offers some benefits beyond your pre-verbal child being able to tell you he or she needs a new diaper. Read on to find out where to sign up!

photo: Bonner Springs Library via Flickr 

Why sign?
The benefits of learning to sign with your little one are numerous. Advocates cite improved communication with parent/caregiver and baby, faster adoption of spoken language skills for your baby, and increased confidence for both parents/caregivers and children.

The classes below feature modified American Sign Language (ASL) and focus on key signs parents and babies can start using right away. Most also offer baby sign language for children with special needs.

photo: via Baby Fingers Facebook page

Baby Fingers
A program now in its 17 year, Baby Fingers signature class features learning to sign through song. Based on learning development research, music and sign language are combined to help you and your child communicate effectively.

Classes run for 45 minutes and are offered at multiple locations throughout NYC. Prices are $35 for a drop-in class, with packages available depending on location. Baby Fingers also offers home-hosted classes and webinars if there isn’t a location convenient for you. 


photo: Signing Up LLC Facebook page

Signing Up
Signing Up offers workshops to teach the basics for learning sign language. Incorporating activities, songs and a practical overview, their classes leave babies and parents leaving class ready to get started!

Workshops locations vary, and are available in every borough Cost per workshop is $50 for individual and child; $60 for couple and baby. Check their calendar for updated locations and workshops offered.

They also offer both in-home workshops, webcam workshops, and private consultations, all of which can be registered for, and scheduled online.  Rather take classes on your own time? Signing Up offers a five-class online course based on its popular baby sign language workshop; access to the videos for a year is $14.99. 

photo: Sign-a-song via Yelp

Sign-A-Song
Sign-A-Song  hosts classes at private homes or recreational spaces in Manhattan and Brooklyn. Classes are appropriate for ages 3 months to 3 years, and prices vary based on location and group size. Contact the founder, Andrea, directly at andrea@sign-a-song.com or 646-752-9612 to learn more. 

 

Do you know of an amazing baby sign language class? Tell us about it in the comments! 

—Ilyssa Smith