Signing Songs is an entertaining film that teaches sign language through music to help children develop their speech and language.
The film demonstrates how to teach signing to babies or children with special needs and works for all children. This approach was developed by board certified music therapist, Lesley Ketcham and the caring father of a child with special needs.
The use of songs with signs enables children to communicate with their hands before they talk. It assists children in the following ways:
- Increases clarity of a child’s wants and needs
- Promotes active participation and play
- Greatly expands a child’s vocabulary
- Develops self-esteem
- Combines visual, physical, verbal and musical learning
- Stimulates brain development
- Develops motor skills, using movement
- Creates a rich learning environment
- Fosters language growth and music appreciation
Sometimes sign language is used to communicate full sentences, especially for children with hearing impairments. In this instance, only specific words in the songs are highlighted by sign. Target words are paired with signs in music to provide for an opportunity for learning in a structured and fun manner.
Signs in this film are not exact; rather they are made to be appropriate for the cognitive and fine motor developmental level of children. The signs, gestures and imitation skills learned are meant to be an easy way to bridge the gap until more expressive language skills are learned.
In addition to specific signs, it is important for children to be able to imitate actions and gestures. Songs in this film also provide opportunity to practice imitation skills, not just specific signs.
Signing Songs is also relies on a natural setting to teach children songs and sign language, eliminating the potential of over stimulated youngsters through flashing screens and fast-paced graphics.