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Sunday, February 22, 2009

advanced communication

Fay added a sign to her communication wallet yesterday. I haven't really tried to teach her many signs. Sometimes its just inconvenient (I don't have my hands free to sign) and sometimes its just laziness. It really takes results for you to want to teach more signs, but by then it may be time for her to talk anyway! But about 2-3 months ago, I noticed one of Fay's friends doing the "more" sign and I thought that was a pretty useful sign. Its a somewhat abstract concept, so its not as easy for Fay to express by her usual means "uh, and point". So I've been signing it on and off, usually while we are eating. If she wants more milk I'll do the more sign (pinching your fingers and thumbs together and tapping them together again and again) before fetching the milk.

SO! Yesterday I was giving Fay a kind of airplane ride by lying on my back and perching her on my knees above me. After I did it once I asked her if she wanted more (just verbally -- I didn't do the sign). She looked at her hands and started clapping them. But then she looked at them more intently and changed the open palm clap into a pinched finger clap. So amazing to see her figure it out!!

So we did airplane rides and more signs for a long time because we were both having a lot of fun with that. :)

The coolest thing is that I've mostly, if not exclusively, used the sign during mealtimes. So for her to transfer that concept into another activity is really cool. Sometimes I don't know if she understands the meaning of a word or sign the same way I mean it. Like when she uses the "all done" sign to mean pick me up. I think she has misunderstood the meaning. But this was a clear case of, not only understanding the meaning of "more", but knowing that it applies to more than just food.

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