Gallaudet University Press

5:10 Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Look Who's Signing

Have Fun Signing When You Sing, Play, Read
and Explore the World With Your Baby

From a very young age, children can tell us a lot more than we can believe. Can you imagine a baby telling you “I like the color blue, or “I see the squirrel” without uttering a word? The team that created the Baby’s First Signs books have produced two new board books to help toddlers learn American Sign Language (ASL) signs, A Book of Colors and Out for a Walk. In A Book of Colors, charming characters and objects help children learn the signs for favorite colors. Out for a Walk offers parents and children a selection of common, everyday signs that might be used on a walk through the neighborhood.

Learning basic ASL signs encourages infants, toddlers, and preschoolers to explore their world by giving them the means to name, inquire about, and describe what they find. Research shows that all children, regardless of their hearing ability, benefit from learning sign language. They experience reduced frustration, accelerated language development, and greater interactive bonding when their parents use sign language with them.

Each of the new books clearly illustrates signs that are easy to learn and fun to use. Printed on robust cardboard stock, these delightful full-color books will engage toddlers in new topics as they discover more basic signs, proven to accelerate their grasp of language. View a select assortment of these brightly colored illustrations from A Book of Colors and Out for a Walk, and take advantage of your exclusive subscriber 20% discount by ordering today.

The Babys First Signs series also includes Babys First Signs and More Babys First Signs which grabbed the attention of School Library Journal in a previous review: In both titles, a brown-skinned toddler signs elementary words such as ball, sleep, hot, and rain in American Sign Language (ASL). A small box with a clear pencil illustration of the directions for signing the word appears in the corner of each larger picture of the child interacting with Dad and Mom. The bright, simple illustrations outlined in black will be appealing to preschoolers. The note on the back of the books points out, ...a growing number of researchers agree that not only deaf children but also hearing children can benefit from early exposure to sign language, often learning basic signs as early as nine months old, before they learn spoken words.’” View the illustrations from Baby’s First Signs and More Baby’s First Signs and order both.

David A. Stewart and Bryan R. Clarkes Literacy and Your Deaf Child garnered the following acclaim from Library Bookwatch, an official newsletter of The Midwest Book Review: “Emphasizing the developmental link between American Sign Language and English literacy for children who learn and use it, Literacy and Your Deaf Child is an excellent informational and guide volume and is very highly recommended for anyone who works with hearing-disabled children.” In chapter one of Literacy and Your Deaf Child, authors David A. Stewart and Bryan R. Clarke define literacy, stating: “For many people, literacy means the ability to communicate, to read and write, to calculate and, with the advent of cyberspace, use a computer. The latter is made evident by the recently invented term computer-literate.” This new guide equips parents with the information they need to ensure that their deaf or hard of hearing child becomes a proficient reader and writer and develops overall literacy skills that will enable him to function in an increasingly print-oriented world. Read the review in its entirety along with chapter eight, Writing, and order Literacy and Your Deaf Child.

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