WellesleyWeston Magazine

FALL 2018

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

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and play. At six to eight months we start to see many infants make the sign back. The ability to signal their preferences reduces frustration for infants." "Only 25 percent of the speech of an infant between 18 months and two years is comprehendible," she adds. "At that point, children have clear preferences of what they want. At two years, 50 to 70 percent of an infant's speech becomes intelligible. The terrible twos may only be terrible because of the frus- tration in our inability to understand the toddler." "We teach sign to all of our students at MiniMiracles, whether they have a special need or not. The amazing thing is that all the children reply in the same way. It is especially useful for our work with children with autism because autism is viewed as a language-associated dis- ability. We can use hand over hand signing so the child can learn how to make the sign if need be." "Baby signing is becoming a part of early infant development. There are many YouTube videos and apps that can be downloaded to teach anyone how to do it. In fact, I recently saw that main characters in the TV show Blues Clues using sign," notes Genovese. "Baby sign has become so much more prevalent," agrees White. "Instead of selling the concept, as I used to do 20 years ago, I am now focusing on customizing the approach for each infant." "I once worked with a mother who was worried that her second child was not developing as quickly as her first had. I quickly realized that the mother was so busy that she was not making enough eye contact with the infant. Once she started to make more eye contact, the child learned to do so as well and could mime signs back." "Baby sign language is changing the communication skills and under- standing that we have of infants," concludes Spencer. "But most impor- tantly, it allows parents to create a bond and two-way communication with their infants sooner than they would otherwise." RESOURCES n ALLISON GENOVESE http://rcslearning.org/ agenovese@rcslearning.org 508.650.5940 n KIRSTEN SPENCER KirstenPaige@aol.com 978.790.4122 n SHERYL WHITE Baby Kneads www.babykneads.com sheryl@babykneads.com 617.905.0100 167 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | f a l l 2 0 1 8

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