If you have a young child that’s already speaking, it’s not too late to begin signing! Remember, ASL stands for American Sign Language–it’s a language completely separate from English. (You wouldn’t say that your three year old is too old to learn Spanish or French, would you?)
Not only does sign language increase a preschooler’s vocabulary, it makes important connections in the brain that will help your child learn to read! Here’s an excerpt from an awesome article from education.com to tell you more:
Laura Berg, a certified teacher and founder of My Smart Hands–an agency that offers information and sign language classes for hearing toddlers and parents–explains that sign language helps to bridge the two hemispheres of the brain. This gives children two ways to access a word and its meaning. “Signing is different than learning spoken languages,” notes Berg. “We take in language on the left side of our brain as a sound and we take in sign language on the right side of our brain as an image–something that spoken languages don’t do.” Additionally, she says, using sign with verbal language meets the needs of all different types of learners: auditory, visual and kinesthetic.
Click here to read the rest of the article.