Benefits of Learning Signs in Early Childhood
Research shows that children who learn signs while young tend to have:
- better verbal skills
- literacy rates
- higher IQ scores
Childcare providers, Head Start, preschool and elementary school teachers in multicultural settings
Many who work with groups of children in childcare settings, Head Start programs and school classrooms find themselves in the challenging position of trying to teach curriculum to children who do not yet understand the language in which they are being taught. This lack of common language makes teaching difficult for teachers and learning much more challenging for children. The SignBridge Method is one of the best ways to overcome this obstacle to learning. By using signs to create a “universal” classroom language, of sorts, communication becomes not only easier and more effective between the teacher and his or her students, but also among all the children in the classroom or childcare setting.
International Adoption and SignBridge
Parents of internationally-adopted children can use the SignBridge Method to help ease the difficult transition their children face when coming to the U.S., as it provides an easy-to-learn means of communication for the child and his or her new family. Any tool that makes communication easier for these children represents a potentially huge gift in their lives, as obstacles to understanding are removed and a means of expression emerges. The SignBridge Method is such a tool and may represent the easiest, fastest way to bring the gift of communication into the lives of these children and their adoptive families.
ESL and Foreign Language Classrooms
ESL, foreign language and language immersion teachers will also find the SignBridge Method an invaluable resource. The SignBridge Method is ideally suited for use in any second language classroom, whether the students are English language learners or English-speaking students who are trying to learn a second language. Because many signs look like the meaning they are meant to convey, it is often very easy for students to understand the meaning of the signs even before they know their corresponding words in another language.
SignBridge for Parents, Teachers and Others Wishing to Begin Introducing Foreign Language Vocabulary
Many parents, child care providers and teachers are beginning to understand the enormous value of introducing foreign-language vocabulary in early childhood, as experts agree that childhood is the best time to begin learning second languages. Yet, in the U.S., most children do not begin second language instruction until high school, when it becomes more difficult for them to learn and more challenging for teachers to teach them. Why not take advantage of this linguistic “window of opportunity” that early childhood provides and teach children when they are most easily able to learn? The SignBridge Method is an ideal tool for childcare providers, parents (including homeschooling parents), teachers and others working with young children who hope to bring the many benefits of signing and multilingualism provide.